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Louise Nevelson (American, b. Ukraine. 1900-1988), Dawn's Wedding Feast Columns, 1959, white paint on wood, gift of Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller.

On View: Assemblage Art

Today’s post comes from Samantha Moyer, Art Center student docent.

Louise Nevelson (American, b. Ukraine. 1900-1988), Dawn’s Wedding Feast Columns, 1959, white paint on wood, gift of Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller.

Sculptures by the artist Louise Nevelson have always drawn my attention for their enigmatic quality of endless interpretation. Since having come to the museum, I have been greatly intrigued by the white monochromatic sculpture Dawn’s Wedding Feast Columns, created by Nevelson in 1959. The piece currently resides in the permanent collection of the Lehman Loeb and can be seen on display in the gallery. Originally part of a much larger installation of about 85 pieces from the 1959 “Sixteen Americans” exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the work is composed entirely of found and discarded wooden objects such as moldings, cornices, and asymmetrically shaped boards.

One of the things that I find most interesting about her works is the choice to paint the whole assemblage one color. Prior to this exhibit she had almost exclusively painted all her pieces black; this show was actually the first where she utilized white, relating to the nuptial theme of the work. Nevelson valued the transformative power of a monochromatic assemblage. Recognizable item loose their individual impact when incorporated into such a structure that contributes to the effect of the piece as an entire sculpture. Nevelson’s stances on color and form, as well as her eccentric personality are greatly insightful and entertaining. Below is a clip of Nevelson speaking about her views on art and life.

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