Here sweeping strips of torqued steel pierce a wooden form and thrust it into the air. Pepper made this work from an elm that was felled on her property in Italy while she was visiting the Cambodian temple Angkor Wat in 1960—a trip she credits as the catalyst for her shift from painting to sculpture. She added to the tree’s natural hollows, drilling and sawing to create new paths for the curvilinear metal bands. The complementary relationship between the materials and shapes recalls the sprawling banyan trees she saw at Angkor Wat, while the title serves as a tribute to Pepper’s daughter, who accompanied her to the temple and whose astrological sign is Taurus.
The artist gets at the root of her sculpture
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