From January 21 through April 25, 2006, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will present Richard Long: The Path Is the Place Is the Line, featuring work by Richard Long created and inspired by a three-week walk along the Pacific Coast Trail in the Sierra Nevada foothills in September 2005. The work in the exhibition will include photographs, stone floor sculpture, text pieces, and large-scale mud drawings. Following the tradition of the English Romantics, who used the glories of their native countryside for a communion with the sublime and the source of their artistic inspiration, Long has spent his career making work based on his experiences in the wilderness.
The works on view at SFMOMA were created as part of Long’s artist residency with the For-Site Foundation. Established in 2003, For-Site is a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting the creation, understanding, and presentation of art about place.
“We are delighted to present the work of Richard Long, the first artist to work in the For-Site residency program, here at the Museum,” says Sandra S. Phillips, SFMOMA’s senior curator of photography and the exhibition’s organizer. “Long is one of the most distinguished and influential of English artists who work conceptually in natural sites, and, among other expressions, he has produced photographs of great beauty and imagination.”
Born in Bristol, England, in 1945, Long is one of Britain’s most internationally acclaimed artists. Characterized by a vigorous and solitary sense of quest, his work is often described as minimal or conceptual, comprising photographic records of his solitary walks or using materials that relate his experiences in the wilderness. Known for the meditative, minimalist rock circles he constructs and sometimes documents on these journeys, he also creates austere and deceptively simple rock sculptures—massings in geometric shapes like circles—in museums and galleries from materials found in remote places. He frequently augments his photographs, wall drawings, and sculptures with descriptive text that is cogent and also expansive.
“You could say that my work is a balance between the patterns of nature and the formal ideas behind human constructs like lines and circles,” Long explains. “It is where my human characteristics meet the natural forces and patterns in the world. That is really the subject of my work.”
SFMOMA’s Education Department will present a special program to accompany the exhibition. Additional information is available on the Museum’s Web site at www.sfmoma.org.
information is available on the Museum’s Web site at www.sfmoma.org.
Richard Long: The Path Is the Place Is the Line is organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and facilitated by the For-Site Foundation through the generosity of Roger Evans.