Professor Sarah Sze in Solo Exhibition at Gagosian Rome

January 7, 2019

Sarah Sze First Time (Half-life), 2018 Oil paint, acrylic paint, archival paper, adhesive, tape, ink, acrylic polymers, shellac, water-based primer and wood 84 x 105 x 4 inches Photo by Rob McKeever Courtesy of Gagosian Gallery © Sarah Sze

Visual Arts Professor, Sarah Sze, currently has a solo exhibition at Gagosian Rome, which marks her first gallery exhibition in Italy following her participation in the Biennale di Venezia in 2013 (Triple Point, US Pavilion) and 2015. Her exhibition will through January 26, 2019.  


The exhibition combines a complex network of objects and images across multiple mediums from sculpture to painting, drawing, printmaking, and video installation. According to Gagosian, Sze “work[s] from an inexhaustible supply of quotidian materials, she assesses the texture and metabolism of everything she touches, then works to preserve, alter, or extend it. Likewise, images culled from countless primary and secondary sources migrate from the screen to manifest on all manner of physical supports—or as light itself.”


The exhibition includes the latest in her video installation series Timekeeper which began in 2015, titled Flash Point. The immersive atmosphere blends the mediums of sculpture and cinema and is “sort of Plato’s Cave. The new work confronts the viewer from simultaneous points of view: moving pictures of people, animals, scenes, and abstractions unfold, flickering and orbiting randomly like thought, or life itself,” according to Gagosian. Silvia Marchetti of Wallpaper* said, “The work inundates the senses and leaves the viewer’s head spinning with one overwhelming, existential question: what is real, and what isn’t?”


The exhibition also includes Half-life, a series of new panel paintings in an adjoining room and Split Stone (7:34) (2018), the first in a series of planned outdoor stone sculptures, located at Museo Nazionale Romano, Crypta Balbi, Rome. In regards to her work, Sze said, “I've been interested in the ways in which we experience images as ephemeral objects, like passing thoughts, sometimes interconnected, sometimes disjointed; there is nothing linear about it...I want the work to have the residue of improvisation. There is always room for the unexpected to sneak in and rearrange the space altogether: it’s when the unexpected enters that we feel most alert, most moved, and most alive."


Sarah Sze represented the United States at the Venice Biennale in 2013, and was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2003, and a Radcliffe Fellowship in 2005. She has exhibited in museums worldwide, and her works are held in the permanent collections of prominent institutions, including The Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Fondation Cartier, Paris; The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Museum of Modern Art, Los Angeles. Sze’s work has been featured in The Whitney Biennial (2000), the Carnegie International (1999) and several international biennials, including Berlin (1998), Guangzhou (2015), Liverpool (2008), Lyon (2009), São Paulo (2002), and Venice (1999, 2013, and 2015). Sze has also created public works for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, and the High Line in New York. In 2016 Sze completed a permanent commission for the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s 2nd avenue subway line, 96th street station. Recent institutional exhibitions Sarah Sze: Timekeeper, Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA (2016, traveled to Copenhagen Contemporary, Denmark, in 2017); ARoS Triennial, Arhus, Denmark (2017); and Centrifuge, Haus der Kunst, Munich (2017).


Her forthcoming works include permanent outdoor commissions for Western Washington University, the City of Portland, Maine, and the San Francisco Arts Commission.