LINCOLN, MA.- DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum
is hosting Chakaia Booker: In and Out, May 15-August 29, 2010. The exhibition is organized by DeCordova's Senior Curator Nick Capasso, and is the largest museum exhibition of the artist's work to date.
Nick Capasso says, "Organizing this exhibition of Chakaia Booker's work firmly underscores DeCordova's commitment to presenting and interpreting contemporary sculpture, both indoors and outdoors. This show is a milestone for this institution, as we move towards our goal of becoming one of America's pre-eminent centers for the study of three-dimensional work."
Chakaia Booker: In and Out presents 30 artworks that trace Booker's career from the early 1990s to the present. Booker's work fill DeCordova's indoor galleries and spill into the Museum's outdoor terraces, entry plaza, roof, and Sculpture Park to create DeCordova's largest sculpture exhibition to date. Monumental outdoor sculpture and indoor freestanding sculpture, wall reliefs, pedestal pieces, photographs, and drawings are featured. "It's So Hard To Be Green" selected for the 2000 Whitney Biennial, and "No More Milk and Cookies" and "The Conversationalist" currently on view in DeCordova's Sculpture Park, are included in the exhibition.
Chakaia Booker is one of America's foremost contemporary sculptors and African-American artists. She is best known for the material and process that characterize the majority of her work: cut-up automobile tires that are reassembled on wooden or steel armatures to create abstract sculptures. Formally, Booker's work is engaged in dialogue with the history of Western sculpture, from the ancient and classical tradition of the human figure through the geometric and minimal non-objective sculpture of the twentieth century. What sets her work apart, and significantly expands upon the history of sculpture, is her abilityÄîwith rubber tiresÄîto create surfaces on objects that resemble skins, feathers, scales, spikes, armor, or attire. The surface patterns created, in concert with their underlying forms, serve as metaphors for a potent range of emotions and psychological states. Common themes in her work include issues of black culture, identity, gender, and ecology.
Chakaia Booker: In and Out is the first in a planned series of major solo exhibitions of important contemporary sculptors to be held each summer at DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum. Shows like Chakaia Booker: In and Out highlight the institution's unique indoor and outdoor exhibition environments by bringing sculpture inside the museum space. The exhibitions and recent sculpture acquisitions are part of an effort to move DeCordova toward its goal of becoming a premier American sculpture park by 2020.
Chakaia Booker received an MFA from the City College of New York and a BA from Rutgers University. She has created outdoor installations for Storm King Art Center, the City of Indianapolis, Socrates Sculpture Park, Laumeier Sculpture Park, and NASA. Solo exhibitions of her work have been organized by the Akron Art Museum, the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, the Katonah Museum of Art, Laumeier Sculpture Park and Museum, and the Neuberger Museum of Art at SUNY Purchase. Booker was also included in the 2000 Whitney Biennial. She has received awards from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and was an Artist-in-Residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem. Public collections include the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Bronx Museum of Art, New Orleans Museum of Art, and the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Chakaia Booker was born in Newark, NJ and currently lives and works in New York, NY and Allentown, PA.