Kenyon College

Mirror-Shadow XXVI


Louise Nevelson
(American, 1899-1988)

Mirror-Shadow XXVI, 1986.
Painted wood.
91 x 69 x 22 inches.
Gund Gallery Collection; transfer from Kenyon College, gift of David Horvitz and Francie Bishop Good, 2017.4.9.

On Public View: Kenyon College, Storer Hall, Lower Lobby

Displayed in Storer Hall, Mirror-Shadow XXVI is a large-scale wood sculpture covered in black paint. Two thin, tenuous forms extend off the sculpture, as if they are delicately and precariously supporting the entirety of the piece. Upon close inspection, the viewer can notice the rich density of carved shapes and layers that compose this meticulously crafted composition. In the mid-1950s, Nevelson began experimenting with wood landscape sculptures, utilizing bits of furniture and found wood scraps to create the forms. Once assembled, Nevelson would complete the sculpture by painting it black, creating a monochromatic piece. Inspired by Cubist artists, Nevelson abstracted once easily identifiable forms in her work by painting the entire piece black, thereby allowing the viewer to focus on the formal relationships that emerge between the different shapes and dimensions of each object.

Caroline Chang `18