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Infectiously Playful – Anthony Caro on the Roof of the Metropolitan

Posted by the editors on Saturday, 30 April 2011

Anthony Caro, Early One Morning (1962) Painted steel and aluminium

Ken Johnson has written “On the Met’s Roof Garden, Sculpture at Play”, an article in the Art & Design section of The New York Times, looking at the venerable Bristish sculptor Anthony Caro, his ebullient, “anything-is-possible” sculptures of the early 1960s, of which the above “Early One Morning” (1962) is certainly a wonderful example, and the exhibition on the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MMA) in New York entitled “Anthony Caro on the Roof” (through 30 October at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; (212) 535-7710; metmuseum.org).  Johnson writes of the, perhaps thwarting, effects of art critic Clement Greenberg‘s hyperbolic praise on Caro’s work after the mid-1960s, and laments the fact that work such as “Early One Morning“, above, are not included in the Met’s show.  Happily, what Johnson terms Caro’s “break-out” sculpture, “Midday“, below, is part of the show.  Its gleaming taxi-cab yellow should be right at home in the blaring, dynamic wonder that is New York City.

Here’s an excerpt from what the Metropolitan says about the exhibition:

Sculptures by Anthony Caro (b. 1924)—who is considered the most influential and prolific British sculptor of his generation and a key figure in the development of modernist sculpture over the last sixty years—are featured in the 2011 installation on The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden. The installation includes a selection of sculpture in steel, painted and unpainted, spanning the artist’s career to date and highlighting principal aspects of his long career: engagement with form in space, dialogue between sculpture and architecture, and creation of new, abstract analogies for the human figure and landscape.

This year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the first exhibition of steel sculpture by the artist, who lives and works in London. The large-scale works on view this summer are Midday, 1960 (Museum of Modern Art, New York), After Summer, 1968 (Collection of Audrey and David Mirvish, Toronto), Odalisque, 1984 (The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), Blazon, 1987–90 (Courtesy of Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York and Annely Juda Fine Art, London), and End Up, 2010 (Collection of the artist, courtesy of Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York). The installation is situated in the Museum’s dramatic open-air space offering unparalleled views of Central Park and the New York City skyline.

“Midday”, Anthony Caro, 1960, included in the rooftop exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

image: top, © Barford Sculptures Ltd/Tate, London 2009/venicebiennale.britishcouncil.org; bottom, Anthony Caro/artinfo.com

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