New York

Richard Serra

Gagosian Gallery

There was a period, beginning with the removal of Tilted Arc, 1981, from Manhattan’s Federal Plaza in 1989, during which critics routinely castigated Richard Serra’s sculptures for being megalomaniacal. Weighing many tons and dominating human bodies with brutal solids of cast or hot-rolled steel, the work seemed to many to be interested only in its own enormity—and, implicitly, in the money, will, and firepower that allowed it to be forged, transported, and installed.

But over the past five years or so, the worm has turned. In 2005, Serra unveiled a permanent installation of eight sculptures, collectively titled The Matter of Time, in a huge gallery at the Guggenheim Bilbao. The project has garnered wide acclaim as an essay in perceptual intervals—that is, as an environment that responds to rather than disciplines individual, real-time locomotion. The Guggenheim installation centers on the

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