Last week, my quilting buddies and I visited the Clark to see the El Anatsui
installation at Stone Hill Center. El Anatsui was born in Ghana and now lives in Nigeria, where he makes monumental sculptures from discarded liquor tops. He wires them together and makes a sort of metal fabric, which he then drapes, pleats, and places them on the wall.
Did I say they are enormous? It’s hard to tell from this picture of Delta, although I guess you can see the floor and the ceiling and get an idea of the scale.
Strips of Earth’s Skin
is even bigger. I really wanted to touch it, but I didn’t.
This one, Intermittent Signals made me gasp as I entered the room. The golden colors took on a glow that reminded me of Egyptian splendor. It wrapped around two walls and ended up draping on the floor.
Barbara and Nike getting a close-up view.
Some of the tops were folded and spiraled around into circles that were joined together by wire.
In these last two you can read some of the names of the liquor companies.
There are only three pieces in the installation, but it was well worth the trip just to see them. El Anatsuiwas in Stone Hill Center, the newer section of the museum, which is a whole separate building. We could have taken shuttles up to the main building , but we opted to walk on the path through the woods. It was a lovely walk on a beautiful day.
At the main building we saw Pissaro’s People, the work of Camille Pissarro (1830–1903). This was a large exhibition with many rooms of his paintings. Although Pissarro was best known as a landscape painter, he had a lifelong interest in the human figure and painted people from many walks of life. We enjoyed this and the other special exhibit, Spaces, which were large-scale photographs by Candida Höfer and Thomas Struth.
It truly was a wonderful trip, and our heads were spinning with ideas.
[This post originally appeared on the blog News from Norma
, and has been reprinted with permission.]
All photos courtesy of Norma.
El Anatsui (Ghanaian, born 1944), Delta, 2010. Found aluminum and copper wire, 15 ft. 3 in. x 11 ft. 3 in. (464.8 x 342.9 cm). Private collection [Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, NY]
El Anatsui (Ghanaian, born 1944), Strips of Earth’s Skin, 2008. Found aluminum and copper wire, 12 ft. 10 in. x 22 ft. 10 in. (330.2 x 696 cm). The Broad Art Foundation, Santa Monica [Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, NY]
El Anatsui (Ghanaian, born 1944), Intermittent Signals, 2009. Found aluminum and copper wire, 11 x 35 ft. (335.3 x 1066.8 cm). The Broad Art Foundation, Santa Monica [Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, NY]
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