Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Needs Work

This is a sculpture at the Nassau County Museum of Art, and it is in sorry shape.  The piece is called "Redbank 31, Nassau Variation", and it consists of 16 of these Cor-ten steel rectangles, each ten feet tall and 6 feet wide, in a line, but rotated slightly from one to the other.  I have known this piece for years.  Originally all the elements were all painted glossy black.  Over the years, the paint has faded.  I don't think that Cor-ten steel can rust, but they have painted some red primer on parts of it, as if they are about to repaint the whole piece.  But they haven't.  I really do like the appearance of the lichen growing on the paint, adding different textures to the original finish.  I think this is a really interesting photograph because of these subtle variations in texture and color.  But this hardly seems like the proper way to take care of an important piece of sculpture.


Anonymous said...

This is so interesting because, while it looks like the sculpture has been neglected, maybe it's the artist's statement about growing old. We don't look the same as we did years ago, but we develop other appealing characteristics.

Of course, if the piece is in a state of unintentional deterioration, then shame on the people who have been entrusted to care for this artwork.

Maybe you could ask someone if its present condition is intentional? I'd love to know.

Ken Spencer said...

This is a really good point! Thanks so much for posting this. Because of the fact that the lower halves of a number of the rectangle have been over painted with red primer, I am guessing that this deterioration is unintentional.