Posted On: March 25, 2008
Richard Deacon’s Assembly is an exhibition of seven large, brilliantly-colored ceramic sculptures on the lawns of Madison Square Park.
Richard Deacon has transformed public art and achieved international recognition for his sculpture, which is marked by an interest in the manipulation of a variety of materials and in an innovative use of open form. His work has been known as much for its found-object sensibility as for its virtuoso celebration of craft. Deacon’s sculptures are constructed from laminated wood, stainless steel, aluminum, polycarbonate, and leather–materials manipulated into bent forms and fluid constructions alike. Some works are so large that they contain a sense of interior architectural space. Others subvert industrial construction into complicated meanings and material expressions.
Over the past few years, Deacon has been exploring clay and ceramics as sculptural material, and the Madison Square Park exhibition focuses on this new and inventive mode of his work. Assembly features seven new pieces, never before publicly exhibited, created over the last year at the Niels Dietrich ceramic studio in Cologne, Germany. The newest work on display, the Assembly series, is a group of four large-scale, elegant variations on geometric relationships, each presenting an economy of form and an earthly solidity in the forms of richly glazed and patterned ceramics.
About the Artist
Richard Deacon was born in Bangor, Wales in 1949. He has occupied the foreground of British sculpture for the past three decades. Last summer he was selected to represent the Wales Pavilion at the 52nd Venice Biennale. In 1999, he was awarded CBE, Commander of the British Empire. Deacon was elected to the Royal Academy, London in 1998, and in 1997 he received the Chevalier de l’ordre des arts et lettres from the French Ministry of Culture. In 1987, he was honored with Britain’s prestigious Turner Prize.
Deacon’s work has been exhibited throughout the world. The exhibition Border Traffic: Richard Deacon is now on view in southern France at Fondation Maeght, St Paul de Vence. Upcoming projects include a one-man exhibition at Stedelijk Museum, s’-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands, September 2008. He has had solo exhibitions at Museum Ludwig, Cologne; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Tate Modern, London; PS-1/Institute for Art and Urban Resources, New York; Dundee Contemporary Arts Centre, Scotland; Whitechapel, London; ARC/Musee d’art moderne de la ville de Paris; Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht; and MoCA, Los Angeles. He has participated in such important international surveys as Documenta IX, Kassel, 1992; Skulptur Projekte Munster, 1997 and 1987; and the Carnegie International, 1991 and 1985.
Deacon’s numerous public art commissions include recent projects in Spain, as well as past projects in the U.S., Netherlands, China, Tokyo, U.K., Switzerland, France, Germany, Canada, and New Zealand. He has held professorships at the London Institute; the Hohschule fur Angewande Kunst, Vienna; and the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts, Paris.
Major support is provided by Donald R. Mullen Family Foundation, Leucadia Foundation, Toby D. Lewis Trust, and Henry Luce Foundation. This project is supported in part with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs. This exhibition is organized with the assistance of Marian Goodman Gallery.