Buhmann on Art, Week of Feb. 12, 2015

 

Installation view: Nancy Graves.   Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY. All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. 

Installation view: Nancy Graves. Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY.
All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

BY STEPHANIE BUHMANN   (stephaniebuhmann.com)

NANCY GRAVES

Through March 7
Tues.–Sat. / 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
At Mitchell-Innes & Nash
534 W. 26th St.
Btw. 10th & 11th Aves.
Call 212-744-7400
Visit miandn.com

An internationally acclaimed conceptual artist, Graves (1939–1995) has been featured in hundreds of notable exhibitions and her work is in the permanent collections of major art museums. Born in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, Graves earned her MFA in painting at Yale in 1964, where her classmates included Robert and Sylvia Mangold, Brice Marden, Chuck Close, and Richard Serra (to whom she was married from 1965 to 1970).

Nancy Graves: “Bones and Their Containers (To Martin Cassidy)” (1971 / Steel, gauze, acrylic, plaster, burlap and wax / 8 by 132 by 60 in. / 20.3 by 335.3 by 152.4 cm.).   Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY. All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. 

Nancy Graves: “Bones and Their Containers (To Martin Cassidy)” (1971 / Steel, gauze, acrylic, plaster, burlap and wax / 8 by 132 by 60 in. / 20.3 by 335.3 by 152.4 cm.). Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY.
All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

Bursting onto the international scene in 1969 with a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art, followed by her prominent inclusion in Documenta V (1972) and Documenta VI (1977), Graves developed a body of work that guides the viewer through her own process of discovery and creation. Groundbreaking scientific research, natural history and fine art were her main source of inspiration.

Nancy Graves: “Evol” (1978 / Watercolor on paper / 63 5/8 by 44 1/2 in. / 161.6 by 113 cm.).   Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY. All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. 

Nancy Graves: “Evol” (1978 / Watercolor on paper / 63 5/8 by 44 1/2 in. / 161.6 by 113 cm.). Courtesy of the Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, NY.
All images © 2015 Nancy Graves Foundation, Inc/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.

During the 1970s, several of her paintings were based on clippings from natural history books or topographical maps of the ocean floor and moon, for example. To Graves, these gathered images, as well as contemporary scientific research and the excitement of new discoveries, embodied a key to the exploration of the unknown.

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