Monday, August 18, 2008

Martin Puryear

Today during my late lunch break I decided to go see the Martin Puryear exhibit at the National Gallery. It was incredible! The brochure calls him "post-minimalist," although the work seemed very minimalist to me, despite being huge pieces. A Flickr search brings up some really great photos of his pieces at a few different galleries.

My favourite piece was Self. It's a monolithic black piece and part of a series examining space and hollowness in his work. I was particularly drawn to this one because it is a solid black wood shape that was built around a armature that was later removed. It's also one of the few that was painted (most are unfinished wood and other materials). So it's a work that is highly refined on the outside, yet its most important feature is completely hidden from onlookers. I love that it is so unknowable, like so many things in life.

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