the Whitechapel Art Gallery in the spring of 1979. It was not surprising at the time though: I was a painter and sculpture did not interest me. In her influential biographical study of the work of Hesse published in 1976, Lucy Lippard closes the chapter covering the artist’s completed “apprenticeship” at the end of a year working in Kettwig-am- Ruhr in Germany with the statement that Hesse returned to New York in 1965 full of new confidence and with “an image of herself as a sculptor” (Lippard 1976: 47). The line thus drawn in Lippard’s narrative of Hesse’s development, between her immature activity in painting and her coming of age as an artist in sculpture, has characterized curatorial decision making, and most of the critical writing about the artist’s practice ever since. In the galleries of the exhibition at Tate Modern, however, in what counts as my first encounter with the work of Eva Hesse twenty-three years on from Eva Hesse: Sculpture at the Whitechapel Gallery, that division looked decidedly less distinct.
Non-traditional painter Angela de la Cruz dramatically blurs the line between painting and sculpture (Figure 6), by virtually destroying her boldly colored canvases and frames and allowing the remaining materials to be displayed as pure form. De la Cruz is an influence in her skill of delivering a concise concept in the most direct fashion possible. These forms act as evidence for the break that has happened from one fine arts classification into the other, leaving painting and entering sculpture. De la Cruzʼs work transcends from painting into the realm of sculpture by introducing flat, glossy color fields, and transforming canvases into three-dimensions as battered victims crumpled into forms. The absence of an image helps bring the forms into sculpture. The mangled canvas is transformed into an elegant form because of her careful consideration for formal elements of composition in a sculptural sense, and this realization has shown me that a sculpture should do more than sit atop a
Other cases do seem to efface Langer's effect more completely. Here we might think of any one of Ghilberti's panels for the doors of the Florence baptistery. But they do so, not merely through the interrelations of sculpted figures, but through setting them in a clearly defined sculpted space, a classical receding plane. And in doing so, they precisely lie nearer the boundary with art properly thought of as pictorial. For the effect of the sculpted surrounding space is precisely to create a sense of a different space from that of the gallery, in the sense traced above (¤IV). Perhaps it seems question-begging to dismiss these examples as only marginally sculptural. But there are other considerations motivating this, such as their combining full-blown sculptural representation with low-relief and even at times engraving. In these respects too, they seem to occupy a region between sculpture and painting, and that is how, in general, tradition has received them. If this marginal status is essential to their frustrating our attempts to experience them in the way Langer has described, they seem as readily to provide a confirmation of her view as a threat to it. 9
The artists drawn by the students are grouped under four themes as audial, plastic, literary and performing arts. It was seen that majority of the students depict artists in the context of plastic arts as persons painting and audial arts as persons singing songs. Not appearing of other art branches can be related with inclusion of popular arts in daily life. How many people have sculptures or do not have any pictures in their homes? Pictures/paintings can exist in homes but sculptures can be rarer. Considering that art education courses mostly take place through painting than sculpture or other arts, it can be understandable that students link with painting more often than other arts. As for the students’ statements concerning what the artists are doing in their drawings, some quotations are given below:
photographed by Clough. The umbilical loop of cord or rubber hosing protruding into the top of the painting, partially obscured by a rectangular scrim, has affinities with a drawing Clough made in her 1987 notebook, glossed as a “sk rope” (presumably “skipping rope”) (fig. 9). 59 The colours echo those Clough deployed in contemporaneous works like Sweetpack, also included in the show, redolent of glistering confectionary wrappings. While visually alluring, this palette’s evocation of oil on water alludes to the petrochemicals used to make plastic, so that like Toypack: Sword it evokes chains of commodity production.
Sculpture and text by Persimmon Blackbridge Photos by Susan Stewad I got the interview at Sunnybrook because I put on my application that I had worked at a child guidance clinic in Ontario Actually, l[.]