Thursday, October 06, 2016

"Driving Forces: Sculpture by Lin Emery"

“Driving Forces: Sculpture by Lin Emery” is on view now through April 2, 2017. Four of Emery’s large kinetic sculptures, including "Octet," "Splay," "Lyric" and "Umbrella Tree," will be outside in the Jane and Harry Willson Sculpture Garden, and five smaller sculptures will be inside in the Alonzo and Vallye Dudley Gallery. Included indoors is a maquette of "Tree Flowers 2" (also in the exhibition) to show visitors how Emery's works evolve from paper model to sculpture. Check out the video below to see the sculptures in motion.

An internationally recognized artist, Emery takes inspiration from the kinetic appeal of music, dance and natural forms, especially flowers and trees, to design works that move gently in response to the wind. Her main materials, polished and brushed aluminum, are the same as those used in boat building in New Orleans, where her work can be found throughout the city. Annelies Mondi, the museum’s deputy director of the museum and curator of the exhibition, came upon Emery’s work while in New Orleans. Mondi said, “It was incredible. She really is a big part of the city, and that intrigued me.” Emery was born in New York City in 1928 and studied under Russian sculptor Ossip Zadkine before settling in New Orleans.

Playwright Edward Albee, who knew Emery from when they were children, compared her sculpture to that of Alexander Calder and George Rickey, both of whom also make use of movement in their work. Albee writes, however, that Emery’s “work can be confused with no one else’s; the world of kinetic art is healthy in her mind and hands.” Emery's sculptures are the latest to be featured in the Jane and Harry Willson Sculpture Garden. Opened in 2011, the sculpture garden is devoted to the works of women sculptors. Previous exhibitions there have focused on sculpture by Alice Aycock, Patricia Leighton, Chakaia Booker and Steinunn Thorarinsdottir.

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