Decades press release | David Zwirner

David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of work by Fred Sandback (1943-2003). On view in the gallery's 519 West 19th Street space, the exhibition will feature a selection of important sculptures and drawings spanning the years 1969 to 2000, representing each decade of the artist's singular and influential career.

Though he used metal wire and elastic cord early in his career, Sandback soon dispensed with those materials to employ acrylic yarn to create works that address their physical surroundings. By stretching lengths of yarn horizontally, vertically, or diagonally at different scales and in varied configurations, the artist developed a unique body of work that elaborated on the phenomenological experience of space and volume with unwavering consistency and ingenuity.

On view will be several smaller-scale, early works in metal and cord from the 1960s; significant permutational works from the 1970s that change over time; reliefs and site-situational constructions from later in the artist's career; and a selection of drawings and artist's books, thus demonstrating the scope of formal and conceptual invention that the artist achieved within his defined idiom.

In keeping with the gallery's program of recreating historic presentations of work by our artists, the exhibition will include a reconstruction of Galerie Heiner Friedrich, Munich, a space for which the artist designed many works in the 1960s and 1970s. It will also include a number of drawings and sculptures by the artist that explore seriality and permutational schemes, among them 16 Variations of 2 Diagonal Lines, 1972, a significant large-scale work that changes over time. First shown at Galerie Heiner Friedrich, Munich in 1973, the sculpture consists of two lengths of yellow acrylic yarn which are installed in a series of sixteen possible permutations (each of the last sixteen days of the exhibition will feature a different variation).  

Among the more recent works to be included in the exhibition will be Untitled (Sculptural Study, Four-part Mikado Construction), 1991/2011, which belongs to a group of works inspired by the chance-generated game of Mikado, or "pickup-sticks." While many works from this series are presented flat against a wall, this three-dimensional construction is comprised of lengths of blue acrylic yarn suspended at non-intersecting angles in space.

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