ArtNowLA" />

Louise Nevelson at Pace Los Angeles

Louise Nevelson, Sky City I, 1957-1959 © 2023 Estate of Louise Nevelson : Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Running from March 11 to April 29, 2023 the show will feature works created by the artist between the 1950s and 1980s. Marking the fifth exhibition dedicated to Nevelson’s work ever mounted in Los Angeles, this immersive presentation will highlight the relationship between Nevelson as a sculptor and her lifelong practice of creating wall-based assemblage and collage.

Deeply engaged with the legacies of Cubism and Constructivism, Nevelson’s artworks have been celebrated for incorporating unexpected combinations of materials and forms. As part of her distinctive approach to abstraction, the artist often explored the visual possibilities of compartmentalized elements and forms, a strategy that recurs across her sculpture, assemblage, collage, and jewelry making. Throughout her career, Nevelson nurtured an artistic practice marked by tireless and vigorous experimentation with materiality, shape, and space.

The upcoming presentation of Nevelson’s work at Pace in Los Angeles will speak to her pioneering yet historically overlooked role in the development of what came to be known as installation art. Bespoke design elements— including accent walls, tinted windows, and blue gel lighting—reference Nevelson’s iconic “environments,” which proposed new ways of seeing and experiencing art.

Among the highlights of the exhibition are large-scale, black-painted wooden sculptures such as the monumental Untitled (Sky Cathedral) (1970-75); rare white-painted sculptures—including the wall-mounted Southern Shores VII, XII and XV (1966) and the freestanding Chapel Study (ca. 1975), a columnar structure produced by Nevelson ahead of the 1977 dedication of her Chapel of the Good Shepherd, a sculptural environment within Saint Peter’s Church in Midtown Manhattan; and the intricate, black-painted, wall-mounted sculptures Mirror-Shadow I (1985) and Mirror- Shadow VII (1985), key examples of a rarely seen body of late work.

A selection of graphic collages—in which the artist transformed scraps of cardboard, foil, wood, metal, newsprint, and other found materials into lyrical abstractions—shed light on a lesser known but essential aspect of her practice. Tearing and combining these varied materials, Nevelson developed an aesthetic of fragmentation and re-assembly that animated the spirit of all her work as an artist. Her work in collage began in the early 1950s and continued until the time of her death. Nevelson kept this work mostly secret during her lifetime, preferring to exhibit her sculptural works. Nevelson’s work in collage opened new avenues for her explorations of light, shadow, reflection, and especially color. Deeply interwoven with her sculptural practice, collage-making was a daily act for the artist, who treated the medium almost like drawing.

Pace’s Los Angeles presentation follows a landmark exhibition of Nevelson’s work presented last year within the historic rooms of the Procuratie Vecchie in the Piazza San Marco in Venice. Titled Louise Nevelson: Persistence, the show—an official Collateral Event of the 59th Venice Biennale—featured some 60 artworks created by the artist between the 1950s and 1980s. The first major show dedicated to Nevelson’s work in Italy since 2013, the exhibition was curated by Julia Bryan-Wilson, whose monographic book on the artist will be released by Yale University Press in 2023.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!