New York

Louise Nevelson

PaceWildenstein 22

“I always thought, bluntly, that I was a glamorous, goddam exciting woman. I wanted to have a ball on earth.” Tall, turbaned, draped in a caftan, swathed in smoke, her eyes shaded by mink eyelashes, Louise Nevelson—a pioneer American abstractionist whose important work dates back to the 1930s and ’40s—was ever up for the grand entrance and the telegraphed witticism. “I wouldn’t marry God if he asked me!” Such principles are less marked by our institutional critique than by the School of Margo Channing. Nevelson’s theatrical mode underscores a body of work of Diva-like exaggeration, a manner magnificently captured in this exhibition that heralded, without expressly saying so, the fiftieth year that the gallery has represented the artist and, since her death in 1988, her estate.

“Dawns and Dusks” surveyed the sculptor’s assemblages of crated detritus vast and small: the bins of architectural

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