Monday, July 6, 2009

Storm King

Saturday, on one of the first sunny weekend days in what seems like months, we went over to Storm King to see the new “Wavefield” work by Maya Lin. We rode the tram around to see all the other sculpture quickly before getting off and walking near the Wavefield. The pieces that grabbed me the most were Alexalder Calder’s “The Arch” (which I loved approaching from several different angles) and George Cutt’s ever-moving “Sea Change”. The metal pieces by Mark DiSuvero and the half dozen or so steel works by New York School sculptor David Smith did very little for me.

A work by someone I’d never heard of before—Chakaia Booker—called “A Moment in Time” was intriguing. From a distance it looked to me as if it was a time gate right out of a sci fi novel. But up close, you realize it’s made entirely out of tires (mostly bike tires I’d guess since they looked smaller than car tires) and the textures change its feel completely.

I’m still not sure what to make of Maya Lin’s Wavefield. We were able to get pretty close to the grass waves, despite the recent wet weather which made walking on it impossible, and there was some oceanic feel, but I kept thinking of the contrast with Cutt’s “Sea Change” where the sculpture actually made the air and metal feel like waves moving. I was expecting that Lin might do the same thing by shaping the ground, but that wasn’t the case. Or maybe, because both Cutt’s sculpture and the air move while earth is immovable and solid, it’s much more of a reach to evoke such a feeling with that medium.

Toward the end of our time at Storm King, we passed a couple sitting in a field that I found touching. She was sketching and writing in a journal while he was reading. The balance and presence the two of them brought into the field seemed as appropriate and moving as the sculptures that surrounded them.

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