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Exhibition of work by American artist Fred Sandback at David Zwirner in London
Installation view at David Zwirner, London, Untitled (Four-part Vertical Construction), 1988. Light blue and red-brown acrylic yarn. Ceiling height x 16 x 25 inches (Ceiling height x 40.6 x 63.5 cm)© 2012 Fred Sandback Archive; courtesy David Zwirner, New York/London.
LONDON.- David Zwirner is presenting an exhibition of work by American artist Fred Sandback (1943-2003). On view in the gallery’s London space, the exhibition features a selection of important sculptures and drawings exemplifying the scope of the artist’s influential career. Major solo museum exhibitions in Britain include the Henry Moore Institute, Leeds (1999); Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge (2005); Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh (2006); and Whitechapel Art Gallery (2011).

Though he used metal rod and elastic cord early in his artistic practice, Sandback soon dispensed with those materials to employ acrylic yarn to create works that address their physical surroundings. By stretching lengths of yarn horizontally, vertically, or diagonally at different scales and in varied configurations, the artist developed a singular body of work that elaborated on the phenomenological experience of space and volume with unwavering consistency and ingenuity.

The sculptures on view range in date from the 1970s to the early 2000s and examine the broad range of formal invention that Sandback achieved within a defined idiom. Among the works in the exhibition are signature works that outline geometric forms, such as Untitled (Sculptural Study, Two Part Standing Construction), 1978/2007, a work in black acrylic yarn that presents two vertical planar forms installed in a perpendicular formation that re-orients the architecture and surrounding space. The gallery will present Untitled (Leaning Triangle), ca. 1990, a large leaning triangle constructed with pink acrylic yarn, and Untitled (Triangle), 1993, a small planar and dimensional projection that integrates the corner and surrounding walls of the room.

A selection of multi-part vertical constructions that extend from floor to ceiling in different configurations and colors will be included in the exhibition. Among them is Untitled (Sculptural Study, Volumes in Dialogue/Opposition), 1982/2005. Composed with black yarn, this work presents two vertical, triangular columnar forms in relation to one another. Also on view is Untitled (Four-part Vertical Construction), 1988, a looped yarn work that is remarkable in its use of two resonating complimentary colors within four single, apparently contiguous lines that demarcate and transform the space in which it is installed. First shown in 1988 at the Dia Art Foundation, New York, the work will be presented here in the curved stairwell of the gallery, extending dramatically through each of the building’s stories.

Other significant works in the exhibition include Untitled (Sculptural Study, Cornered Construction), 1984/2012, which comprises a row of parallel lengths of black acrylic yarn, juxtaposed by an L of vibrant red yarn; the resultant construction is installed across the corner of the space, thereby displacing the viewer’s perception of the architectural surroundings. Untitled (Sculptural Study, Wall Construction), a wall relief from 2001/2012, will also be on view. This two-dimensional work is constructed from red and black acrylic yarn stretched on the wall at different lengths and angles.

Fred Sandback (1943-2003)
Sandback’s work has been exhibited internationally since the late 1960s. His first solo shows were held at Konrad Fischer Galerie, Düsseldorf, and Galerie Heiner Friedrich, Munich, both in 1968, followed by an exhibition at Dwan Gallery, New York, in 1969, while the artist was still a graduate student at Yale School of Art and Architecture. His work is on permanent display at Dia:Beacon, New York, and was the subject of an extensive survey exhibition organized in 2005 by the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz (which traveled to the Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh and the Neue Galerie am Joanneum, Graz, in 2006). In 2011, the artist’s work was featured in a solo exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery, London, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Denver, dedicated its entire building to a solo exhibition. Sandback’s work is represented in many public collections including the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt am Main, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, and The Art Institute of Chicago.

David Zwirner has shown Fred Sandback’s work since 2004. The gallery recently organized an exhibition of important sculptures and drawings from each decade of the artist’s career at its New York location. The exhibition in London will be the fifth solo show of the artist’s work presented by the gallery. On the occasion of the exhibition, the gallery will release its latest monograph on the artist, published in association with Radius Books, which includes an essay by art historian James Lawrence.

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