Way Out West
8/11/2011 - 14/01/2012
8 November Galería Elvira González presents Way Out West, the gallery’s first exhibition of the artist Robert Irwin.
Robert Irwin (Long Beach, California, 1928) is
one of the pivotal US artists of his generation. Widely viewed as a true leader
among West Coast practitioners, Irwin pioneered the use of space and light
effects in his works. He has combined his art practice with lecturing and
teaching having taught and worked with
artists of the stature of James Turrell,
Ed Ruscha and Chris Burden.
With a well-deserved international reputation
for his seminal contribution to various art movements from the 1960's to the
present, in this show Robert Irwin presents five sculptures of fluorescent
light tubes treated in various colours. Furthermore, the artist factored in the
space of the gallery when designing the exhibition, on view to the public until
the beginning of January 2012.
Out West, Irwin explores the beholder’s perception of space and light,
playing with texture, rhythm and chromatic relationships. Rather than an
invasive appropriation of the space, the light of the fluorescent tubes subtly
transfigures the natural lighting of the rooms, creating an enveloping
sensation for the viewer.
In 1994, Michael Govan claimed that “Irwin's work lay across the borders
of a number of different roles — landscape designer, architect, aesthetic
philosopher — in a manner completely consistent with his practice as an artist,
in which, among other things, he has questioned exactly where the boundaries
lie around the role of the artist today.”
This is Robert Irwin’s second
exhibition in Madrid, following
his debut in Spain with the 1995 retrospective at the Museo Reina Sofía. Irwin’s
work has been featured in over 60 solo exhibitions since the early stages of
his career, and is included in major international collections such as Centre
Georges Pompidou, Paris; J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; Hirshhorn Museum
and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; Museo Nacional
Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Solomon R.
Guggenheim Museum, New York; and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Robert Irwin has created countless
installations and interventions in the landscape, like those in Villa Varese
(Panza di Biumo Collection), 1976; Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La
Jolla California, 1995; Dia: Beacon Center for the Arts, 1999; PaceWildenstein
Gallery, Chelsea, New York, 2000; the Chinati Foundation, Texas, 2002; and the
palm garden at the Los Angeles County Museum, California 2007; as well as the
gardens of the J. Paul Getty Museum, also in Los Angeles.