EXHIBITION

from 22/11/2019 until 15/03/2020

Lynda Benglis | In the Realm of the Senses

NEON at the Museum of Cycladic Art from November 22

 ΕΧΗΙΒΙΤΙΟΝ DURATION: 22 November 2019 – 15 March 2020

EXHIBITION

NEON is pleased to present Lynda Benglis: In the Realm of the Senses at the Museum of Cycladic Art, Athens. The guest curator is the distinguished writer, critic and art historian, Dr. David Anfam.

Devoted to Lynda Benglis’s highly original and prolific output in diverse media, this is the artist’s first solo museum exhibition in a country that has played a major role in her life and vision: Greece. Spanning half a century from 1969 onwards, the select survey of thirty-six sculptures – amounting to a concise retrospective – will occupy the intimate spaces of the Stathatos Mansion, displaying a wide spectrum of Benglis’s materials, imagery and ideas.
Among the media are wax, bronze, aluminium, marble, latex, ceramics and glass. The themes include “fallen paintings” (the iconic Baby Contraband), “knots”, “lagniappes”, “torsos”, “pleats” and “fountains”. Visual conversations arise between textures (liquid to waxy and metallic), colours (San Marcos’s monochrome bronzy sheen versus the multi-hued papers made over wire) and orientation (horizontal flow opposing the totemic vertical beeswax pieces).

The Mediterranean setting ensures that radiance and a lapidary sensuousness will pervade the whole. Likewise, the selection also stresses Benglis’s many Greek allusions, especially to the country’s ancient statuary – epitomized by how Fancy Work (1979) echoes the swirling drapery of the Winged Victory of Samothrace (c.220-190 BCE). Indeed, Greece has been a constant muse for Benglis’s expansive imagination, which prizes the “frozen gesture”. 

In the Realm of the Senses celebrates a maverick artist who began as a female pioneer of Post-Minimalism in the late 1960s and still creates with exuberance in the twenty-first century. Describing Benglis’s first wax reliefs as early as 1968, the New York gallerist and critic Klaus Kertess noted that “skin, pull, sensuousness” ranked among her primary concerns. Such intense corporeal sensations extend to the present – as Benglis’s sculpture constantly shifts between fixity and movement, nature and flesh, with both grace and provocative boldness. 

Lynda Benglis

Since the 1960s Lynda Benglis (b. 1941, Lake Charles, Louisiana) has received widespread critical acclaim for her striking ideas projected into three dimensions. Her sculptures are simultaneously playful and visceral, organic and abstract. Benglis began her career on the cusp of Post-Minimalism, pushing the traditions of painting and sculpture into new territory. Her art encompasses diverse materials: from beeswax, latex and polyurethane foam to later innovative work with plaster, gold, vaporized metals, glass, ceramics and paper. Throughout, Benglis has maintained a fascination with process. Flowing forms, sensual surfaces, vivid hues and erotic elements pervade her abstract yet provocative treatment of the body and nature.

IMAGES

In the Realm of the Senses celebrates a maverick artist who began as a female pioneer of Post-Minimalism in the late 1960s and still creates with exuberance in the twenty-first century. Describing Benglis’s first wax reliefs as early as 1968, the New York gallerist and critic Klaus Kertess noted that “skin, pull, sensuousness” ranked among her primary concerns. Such intense corporeal sensations extend to the present – as Benglis’s sculpture constantly shifts between fixity and movement, nature and flesh, with both grace and provocative boldness. 

INFO

ENTRY FEE: €5
GROUPS OF 15 OR MORE: €5 (per person)
MCA FRIENDS: Admission free

FREE GUIDED TOURS
Wednesday : 12:00 – 13:00
Thursday: 18:30 – 19:30
(registration required)

OPENING HOURS
Monday-Wednesday-Friday-Saturday: 10:00 – 17:00
Thursday: 10:00 – 20:00
Sunday: 11:00 – 17:00
Tuesday: closed

ORGANISATION

Background Image 

The Graces, 2003-2005
Cast polyurethane, lead, stainless steel, in three parts
(i) 241.3 x 76.2 x 68.6 cm
(ii) 261.6 x 66 x 66 cm
(iii) 287 x 54.6 x 58.4 cm
© Lynda Benglis. Licenced by VAGA at ARS, NY
Courtesy Cheim & Read, New York

Knossos, 1978
Chicken wire, cotton bunting, plaster, gesso, oil based sizing, gold leaf
154.3 x 52 x 20.3 cm
Private Collection, courtesy of Kalfayan Galleries, Athens-Thessaloniki
Installation view © Panos Kokkinias, Courtesy NEON

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