description of Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres) by Ruth Asawa

This vertical hanging sculpture is almost eleven feet tall, and features six lobes of delicate “crocheted’ mesh, crafted with wire made from iron, copper, and brass. The continuous, undulating form resembles a mesh tube that has been pinched in some places, and stretched in others, to create a series of symmetrical, but irregularly sized orbs. Some of the resulting shapes resemble bulbous onions, almost two feet in diameter, with domed tops that taper to a point. Others are much thinner, like elongated cocoons that taper at both ends to a width of mere inches. The uppermost lobe has an onion-dome top, and a collar at its base that is shaped like a tea cup saucer. Beneath that, near the middle of the sculpture, are two orbs with multiple layers. Each contains a second pod with a wire mesh sphere inside, not unlike a yoke inside an egg, floating in a basket. A long, stretched cocoon of wire mesh hangs beneath the first three lobes, linking them to a cluster of orbs at the bottom of the sculpture. These overlapping shapes resemble two distorted hourglasses. A single sphere is suspended inside the top lobe of this bottom grouping.

Ruth Asawa, Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres), ca. 1958
Ruth Asawa, Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres), ca. 1958; iron, copper, and brass wire, 131 x 22 x 22 in. (332.74 x 55.88 x 55.88 cm); Collection SFMOMA, Phyllis C. Wattis Fund for Major Accessions; © Estate of Ruth Asawa
Ruth Asawa, Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres), ca. 1958

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Untitled (S.114, Hanging, Six-Lobed Continuous Form within a Form with One Suspended and Two Tied Spheres)
Artist name
Ruth Asawa
Date created
ca. 1958
Classification
sculpture
Medium
iron, copper, and brass wire
Dimensions
131 x 22 x 22 in. (332.74 x 55.88 x 55.88 cm)
Date acquired
2014
Credit
Collection SFMOMA
Phyllis C. Wattis Fund for Major Accessions
Copyright
© Estate of Ruth Asawa
Permanent URL
https://www.sfmoma.org/artwork/2014.794
Artwork status
On view on floor 2 as part of Open Ended: Painting and Sculpture Since 1900

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