This exhibition will feature twenty-eight wall-mounted steel sculptures, illustrating the development of a conceptual idea, by the contemporary artist Larry Kagan. An exhibiting artist whose work has been collected and shown by museums and galleries worldwide, Kagan is also a faculty member of the art department of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.
For the past fifteen years, Kagan has been engaged with the process of creating a hybrid form of sculpture that combines the solid component of a steel wire and the specific shadow it casts on the wall in a way that challenges expectations. The form of the shadow suggests the presence of a material object that should be casting it; but it, in fact, does not exist. Objects in Kagan’s repertoire of shadow images include a chair, book, bald eagle, stiletto, and a portrait of George Washington. The perceptual dualism of the three-dimensional abstract object casting an entirely figurative but dissimilar shadow when illuminated is at the heart of Kagan’s work. By disturbing the relationship between objects and shadows in this exhibition, the artist demonstrates how shadows can be transformed from a secondary supporting role in an artwork to the main creative attraction.
Larry Kagan: Lying Shadows is organized by The Hyde Collection. The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue with an essay by Dr. Roberto Casati, author of The Shadow Club published by Alfred A. Knopf, New York (2003), and an interview with Larry Kagan by Erin B. Coe, The Hyde’s Chief Curator.
Image: Larry Kagan (American, b. 1946), Shadow Puppet II, 2007, steel and shadow, 42 x 25 x 8 1/2 in.