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date: 26 January 2020

Primary Structureslocked

  • Doug Singsen

Extract

Primary Structures: Younger American and British Sculpture was an exhibition held at the Jewish Museum in New York City from April 27 to June 12, 1966. Curated by Kynaston McShine, it was the second major Minimalist group exhibition after the Wadsworth Atheneum’s 1964 exhibition, Black White + Gray. Primary Structure’s opening attracted many celebrities and was the subject of a lavishly illustrated Life magazine article, while the exhibition’s title gave rise to the use of the term “primary structure” as a description of the reductive geometric sculpture prevalent in the mid-1960s.

The Minimalist artists featured in Primary Structures were Carl Andre, Larry Bell, Walter De Maria, Dan Flavin, Judy Gerowitz (who later changed her name to Judy Chicago), Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, John McCracken, Robert Morris, and Anne Truitt. Although the Minimalists received the most attention from critics, they were actually a minority within the exhibition, which included a sizeable contingent of asymmetrical, biomorphic or otherwise irregular or non-reductive works....

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