NEW YORK, NY.- David Weinrib, age 91, passed away on February 6. David was actively involved in teaching his Foundation classes at Pratt Institute, where he taught for over 30 years, and making sculpture until a week before death. He was a vital spirit, mentor, and creative force in the field of art to the very end.
For the last 18 years, he was the founder and curator of Pratts sculpture garden, the largest sculpture garden in New York City with over 50 sculptures by important artists, giving the Pratt campus a unique distinction among college campuses throughout the United States. David was that rare artist who delved into and excelled in many techniques and media: in 1952, he was the resident potter and instructor (with his former wife Karen Karnes) at the famed Black Mountain College in North Carolina. He later helped to form a cooperative community in Stony Point, New York, where he continued innovated work in ceramics in architectural settings.
His greatest recognition came as a sculptor in the 1960s where he challenged the premise of gravity/floor/pedestal through works which cantilevered from walls and hung from ceilings, made of a proliferation of forms and materials, and were exhibited in a series of one-man shows at the Howard Wise Gallery from 1961-63.
He later showed at the Royal Marks, Heller, Bernice Steinbaum and Max Hutchinson Galleries. Arguably his most innovative work evolved in the early 70s into multi-form, multi-colored cast resin pieces, which are now in the collections of the Walker Art Center, the Whitney Museum, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
He also participated in group shows at the Whitney Museum, the San Paulo Biennale, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, the Larry Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art and the Los Angeles Museum of Art, among others.
David never stopped innovating, and his work of the last 20 years combined cut paper forms and images of his own body (photographed by his beloved wife Joanne), and then culminated in the use of the latest computer-aided laser-cut technology to make two and three dimensional colleges in acrylic materials, exhibited in 2014 at the Curatorium in Hudson, NY. David is survived by his wife Joanne, and his son Abel (from his first marriage to Karen Karnes). David taught us that the creative act requires risk, constant change, and commitment; we will all miss his wisdom, friendship, and humanity.
His friends are planning a memorial at Pratt Institute for David in the spring.