DALLAS, TX.- The Dallas Museum of Art
today announced the acquisition of a major large-scale sculpture, The Eye, by the celebrated Canadian artist David Altmejd. Among the artists most ambitious works to date, The Eye measures approximately 11 by 18 feet and is an imposing and mesmerizing structure of mirrored glass and wooden support that engulfs the viewer in a spectacular environment of fractured light and reflection. Acquired by the DMA through the DMA/amfAR Benefit Auction Fund made possible by Two by Two for AIDS and Art, the work is currently on view in the DMAs exhibition Performance/Art through March 21, 2010.
Its a pleasure to offer visitors the chance to explore David Altmejds work, which overwhelms and entices the viewer with dazzling visual effect, said Bonnie Pitman, The Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art. This beautiful and dramatic sculpture is an important addition to our collections, and a fascinating component of our Performance/Art exhibition, which explores connections between visual and performing arts. Altmejds work energizes the DMAs collections, which are recognized among the most important museum holdings in the country, and reinforces our citys standing as a major center for contemporary art.
Created in 2008, The Eye draws inspiration from the 2005 John Adams opera Doctor Atomic, which recounts the events leading up to the first nuclear bomb test under the supervision of Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer in 1945. The installations dazzling mirrored facades give the piece a theatrical quality, as well as a sense of movement, drawing possible parallels to an explosion that has been suspended or frozen in time, or a spaceship that has just landed, or to any number of possible references dealing with science and science fiction, as well as the history of sculpture. Altmejd made The Eye for the art gallery at The Metropolitan Opera in New York , which presents the work of visual artists who have been asked to respond to an opera performed during the Mets season.
The Eye is one of Altmejds most abstract and amazing achievements, said Charles Wylie, the DMAs Lupe Murchison Curator of Contemporary Art. The work confounds us with its beauty while challenging our sense of scale, creating an immersive experience. Altmejds exuberant and complex vision makes his work truly extraordinary, and it is extremely exciting to have been able to bring this work to Dallas and have it stay here.
Almejds work joins other large-scale sculptures and installations in the DMAs contemporary art collection by artists such as Chris Burden, Mona Hatoum, Tatsuo Miyajima, Doug Aitken and Olafur Eliasson, among many others. Its acquisition is made possible through the DMA/amfAR Benefit Auction Fund, which is supported by the annual fundraising event Two by Two for AIDS and Art and which has allowed the Museum to acquire approximately 100 works of contemporary art since its founding in 1999.
In October 2009, David Altmejd was awarded the 2009 Sobey Art Award, Canada s preeminent prize for contemporary art. Born in 1974 in Montreal , Quebec , Altmejd has received significant international attention in recent years for his visually rich and complex sculptures. He was selected to represent Canada at the 2007 Venice Biennale, and his work was featured in the 2004 Whitney Biennial. Other recent important exhibitions of Altmejds work have included the 2008 Liverpool Biennial at the Tate-Liverpool, UK , and the 2008 Triennial of Québec Art at the Musée DArt Contemporain de Montréal. He received his BFA from the University of Quebec , Montreal in 1998, and his MFA from Columbia University in 2001.