Abakanowicz

4m/r Le Desert Rouge Magdalena Abakanowicz, sisal, 55" x 43" x 5", 1984, $65,000

“Magdalena Abakanowicz emerged as a a powerful and rebellious artist in the 1960s when her weavings were exhibited both internationally and in her native Poland. Although sometimes misperceived as a ‘feminine’ craft, these monumental webs of coarsely woven, or rich, fleshy fabric, could stretch from ceiling to floor, hang pendulously threatening, or create mysterious environments that the viewer was seduced to penetrate. The forms were woven of startling materials –sisal, rope, hemp, flax, wool and horsehair – and, like, Les Desert Rouge (No. 1), the smaller-scale example in this exhibition, they could be brightly colored; but often Abakanowicz worked naturally colored material into tactile, darkly looming presences that filled gallery spaces and challenged categories of art. Abakanowicz’s Abakans are weavings and sculptures, and when produced in large scale, they become installations." Katherine Nahum, Original Visions: Shifting the Paradigm. Woman’s Art, 1970-1996 (McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College, Massachusetts, 1997), pp. 19-20.



Abakanowicz

5m/r Montana del Fuego, Magdalena Abakanowicz, sisal, 54" x 81", 1986, $140,000 (on hold)





Abakanowicz

1ma/r Studium Faktur, Magdalena Abakanowicz, sisal, 54" x 43" x 9", 1964, $80,000



Abakanowicz

6m/r Vieux Rouge, Magdalena Abakanowicz, sisal, 45" x 80", 1983, $78,000


Abakanowicz detail

Selected exhibitions:
Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York (Wall Hangings, curated by Mildred Constantine and Jack Lenor Larsen); Lausanne, Switzerland (11 International Biennials of Tapestry); Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition (SITES): Charles and Emma Frye Art Museum, Seattle, Washington; Oakland Museum, California; Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, Illinois; Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York; Anchorage Historical & Fine Arts Museum, Alaska; Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, Alabama (22 Polish Textile Artists, traveling exhibition); Jacques Baruch Gallery, Chicago, Illinois; Flinn Gallery, Greenwich Library, Connecticut (Beyond Weaving: International ArtTextiles); University of California Los Angeles Gallery (Deliberate Entanglements); Pasadena Art Museum, California (one-person exhibition); Museum of Decorative Arts, Oslo, Norway (one-person, traveling exhibition); National Museum, Stockholm, Sweden (one-person exhibition); Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Illinois; Museum of Contemporary Art, Montreal, Canada; National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C.; DeCordova Museum, Lincoln, Massachusetts; Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, Texas; Portland Art Museum & Portland Center for the Visual Arts, Washington; Visual Arts Center of Alaska, Anchorage; Frederick S. Wight Art Gallery of the University of California, Los Angeles (retrospective, traveling exhibition); National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo and Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art, Japan (Fiber Works from Europe and Japan); Venice Biennial; Sao Paolo Biennial.

Selected collections:
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York; Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, the Netherlands; Museum of Decorative Arts, Oslo, Norway; Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art, Japan; National Museum, Stockholm, Sweden; Australian National Gallery of Art, Canberra; Caracas Museum of Modern Art, Caracas, Venezuela; Center for Contemporary Art, Warsaw, Poland; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, France; National Museum of Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea; Museo de Arte Contemporaneo Internacional Rufino, Tamayo, Mexico City, Mexico; Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota; Museum of Arts and Design, New York, New York; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC; Ludwig Museum, Köln, Germany: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California; Sezon Museum of Art, Tokyo, Japan.

Recipient:
Gold Medal, American Craft Council; Distinction in Sculpture Award, Sculpture Center, New York, New York; Leonardo da Vinci, World Award of Arts, World Cultural Council, Mexico; Chevalier Order of Arts and Letters, Paris, France.

Abakanowicz

Statement:
"My art has always been a protest against what I have met with in weaving. I started to use rope, horsehair, metal, and fur because I needed these materials to give my vision expression and I did not care that they were not part of the tradition in the field. Moreover, tapestry, with its decorative function, has never interested me. I simply became extremely concerned with all that could be done through weaving. How one forms the surface reliefs, how the mobile markings of the horsehair will be put into place and, finally, how this constructed surface can swell and burst, showing a glimpse of mysterious depths through the cracks. In 1966 I completed my first woven forms that are independent of the walls and exist in space. In creating them I did not want to relate to either tapestry or sculpture. Ultimately it is the total obliteration of the utilitarian function of tapestry that fascinates me. My particular aim is to create possibilities for complete communion with an object whose structure is complex and soft. Through cracks and openings I try to get the viewer to penetrate into the deepest reaches of the composition. I am interested in the scale of tensions that intervene between the woven form, rich and fleshy, and the surroundings." Magdalena Abakanowicz, 1969, quoted in Magdalena Abakanowicz: Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (Abbeville Press, Chicago, New York 1982).