Cubes and Anarchy
This intriguing new look at the work of David Smith reveals how art and personal history shaped the work of one of America’s foremost artists.
Exhibition Itinerary: Los Angeles County Museum of Art April 3–July 24, 2011
Published in association with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Heralded as one of the greatest American sculptors of the twentieth century, David Smith nonetheless identified himself as a member of the working class. A contemporary of Gorky, de Kooning, and Pollock in the New York art world, Smith worked as a welder before and during World War II and retained his union membership thereafter. How Smith meshed these two disparate worlds is the subject of this unique examination that focuses specifically on the geometric features of Smith’s work, including his renowned Cubi series. Published in conjunction with an exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the book considers geometry in Smith’s sculpture as both a formal and thematic construct. Essays by leading curators and scholars explore the relationship between Smith’s lifelong interest in the utopian optimism of the avant-garde and his own artistic identity. The book includes illustrations of more than fifty sculptures, along with drawings, paintings, and vintage photographs by the artist.
Carol S. Eliel
CAROL S. ELIEL is Curator of Modern Art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. She has organized numerous exhibitions and written on subjects ranging from 18th-century French painting to cutting-edge contemporary art.