The Drawing Center will present Drawing Dialogues: Selections from the Sol LeWitt Collection, an exhibition featuring over one hundred works by more than sixty artists from the renowned artist’s extraordinary collection. It is the first large-scale exhibition of the collection to be held in New York in over thirty years. The Drawing Center show will concentrate on minimal and conceptual drawing, which forms the core of the collection, with classic examples from key figures like Mel Bochner, Hanne Darboven, Eva Hesse, and Lawrence Weiner. It also includes works by artists such as Alighiero Boetti, Jan Dibbets, Kazuko Miyamoto, and Fred Sandback that investigate the parameters of mark-making in unexpected materials and formats. In addition to exploring cross-connections among LeWitt’s peers, the exhibition will present contributions by older artists whose methods inspired LeWitt, as well as younger artists whose approaches are in dialogue with earlier generations while extending the medium in new directions. Finally, the exhibition will feature select works by LeWitt himself—including a wall drawing—that resonate with the other objects on view. Presenting work in drawing, sculpture, photography, print, and installation, Drawing Dialogues: Selections from the Sol LeWitt Collection will re-examine minimal and conceptual art and the parameters of the drawn medium through the organizing lens of one of its greatest practitioners. Curated by Claire Gilman, Senior Curator at The Drawing Center, and Béatrice Gross, guest curator and LeWitt scholar.
Sol LeWitt’s status as one of the paramount American artists of the past half-century is well established. What is less known is that LeWitt was also an avid collector who during his lifetime amassed an extraordinary ensemble of over 4,000 pieces by approximately 750 artists through purchase, exchange, and gifts. The majority are works from the 1960s and 1970s by LeWitt’s friends and peers whom he admired and encouraged; but the collection also reaches backwards and forwards from that time to embrace art from other periods and cultures. The LeWitt Collection is a remarkable example of an artist’s extraordinary curiosity and generosity, perhaps the truest portrait of a man who was notoriously private but who dedicated himself to his artistic interests and relationships. It is also a portrait of artistic developments in the 1960s and 1970s, when European and American minimal and conceptual art came into their own. Indeed, the collection can be viewed as a lived archive of the world in which LeWitt moved and worked, even as it examines the possibilities for conceptual art across media, disciplines, and time periods.
ARTISTS ON VIEW INCLUDE
William Anastasi, Carl Andre, Stephen Antonakos, Richard Artschwager, Alice Aycock, Jo Baer, John Baldessari, Robert Barry, Gene Beery, Franco Bemporad, Mel Bochner, Alighiero Boetti, John Cage, Enrico Castellani, Lucinda Childs, Chuck Close, Hanne Darboven, Honoré Daumier, Jan Dibbets, Peter Downsbrough, Sam Durant, Jackie Ferrara, Dan Flavin, Charles Gaines, Gilbert & George, Philip Glass, Dan Graham, Nancy Graves, Hans Haacke, Eva Hesse, Channa Horwitz, Shirazeh Houshiary, Ray Johnson, Donald Judd, Alex Katz, On Kawara, Emily Kame Kngwarreye, Jannis Kounellis, Jacques Lacombe, Clarence John Laughlin, Barry Le Va, Sol LeWitt, Jane Logemann, Richard Long, Lee Lozano, Alvin Lucier, Robert Mangold, Mario Merz, Kazuko Miyamoto, Ree Morton, Eadweard Muybridge, Maurizio Nannucci, Giulio Paolini, Henry Pearson, Adrian Piper, Sylvia Plimack Mangold, Steve Reich, Dorothea Rockburne, Fred Sandback, Jan Schoonhoven, Robert Smithson, Pat Steir, Allyson Strafella, Old Tutuma Tjapangati, David Tremlett, Georges Vantongerloo, Bernar Venet, Ruth Vollmer, Lawrence Weiner, Hannah Weiner, Franz West, and Utagawa Yoshiiku.
ABOUT SOL LEWITT
Sol LeWitt (1928–2007) was an American artist and a pioneering figure within conceptual and minimal art. His instruction-based wall drawings and modular structures emphasize the importance of idea over finished result and distill form to its primary elements: line, color, and shape. Though LeWitt worked in drawing, photography, printmaking, and sculpture over the course of his career, he is perhaps best remembered for his wall drawings whose linear instructions can be carried out by others thereby underscoring his lifelong commitment to collaborative artistic production. Both as a young artist living in New York and throughout his career, LeWitt acquired work by practitioners he admired and whom were often his friends. His curiosity and generosity were an inextricable part of his artistic legacy.