In her first exhibition at Callan Contemporary, Caprice Pierucci debuts a suite of elegant sculptures whose sinuous, sensual forms evoke the natural world and the traditions of minimalist abstraction. Created from a variety of meticulously sculpted and painted woods, the artworks invite an interactive visual experience. As viewers move around them, organic shapes appear to undulate like seaweed caressed by ocean currents or trees swaying in a breeze. The illusion of movement derives from the precise geometries that underlie each composition. “The forms,” she explains, “use progressive rhythms, which develop over time.” This idea—a motif changing through minute variations of time and contour—has informed the minimalist movements in both visual art and music. Notably, there is an almost musical quality to Pierucci’s lyrical, deeply poetic artworks.
Pierucci hails from a distinguished lineage in the history of contemporary art. Her mother, Louise Holeman Pierucci, was an influential figure in the fiber-art movement of the 1960s and 70s, teaching for many years at Carnegie Mellon University. It was from Carnegie Mellon that Pierucci received her own BFA degree before earning an MFA from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. Today she is a senior lecturer in the art department of Texas State University. Her work has been featured in nearly 100 exhibitions, including Caprice Pierucci: Dream State earlier this year at the Art Museum of Southeast Texas. Her work is included in significant collections, including Morgan Stanley, Westinghouse, The Four Seasons Hotels, and the Rockefeller Family Collection.
To create her extraordinary sculptures she has developed a unique and sophisticated technique: painstakingly complex, process-intensive, and by turns additive and subtractive. The resulting pieces delight the eye with allusive shapes and intricate shadow-play. “Depending on the lighting,” she observes, “the shadows can be very dramatic.” The sculptures’ supple curves recall smooth canyon walls in the desert Southwest, where wind, water, and time erode stone into evocative forms. The shapes are archetypal, awakening shared visual and emotional memories from the wellspring of the collective unconscious. With their immaculate structures and delicate beauty, they afford an opportunity for meditation on the passage of time, the richness of change, and the constant renewal of the cycle of life.