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Contact: Elaine Merguerian 212.327.9271, elainem@asiasociety.org

ASIA SOCIETY MUSEUM PRESENTS SARAH SZE: INFINITE LINE

EXHIBITION IS THE FIRST TO FOCUS ON THE ARTIST’S WORKS ON PAPER AND DRAWINGS

On view December 13, 2011–March 25, 2012

Working with different mediums, I think about: what can a print do that a painting can’t, what can a collage do that a photograph can’t, what can a drawing do that a sculpture can’t? I think completion is more about balancing orientation and disorientation, or shifts from large to small, or shifts from valuable to invaluable.
–Sarah Sze

Sarah Sze, Hidden Relief, detail. Mixed media. Installation commissioned by Asia Society on the occasion of its 2001 reopening. On view Oct. 2001-Oct.2004. Image courtesy of the artist

Sarah Sze (born 1969, U.S.) is known for her elaborate installations in which everyday materials—such as plastic bottle caps, sheets of paper, strings, tape measures, cotton swabs, and scissors—are hung from the ceiling, mounted in corners, or nestled into discreet spaces. Sarah Sze: Infinite Line is the first exhibition to focus specifically on Sze’s work from drawings to sculpture to installation.

Sze combines spontaneity and systemization in her work, which often suggests movement and the ephemeral. Energized chaos becomes painstaking order, when, upon closer inspection, seemingly turbulent scenarios reveal precisely placed objects. Her intimate, sculptural installations invite viewers to reevaluate their relationship to their surroundings.

“Sarah Sze: Infinite Line provides a critical inquiry into the process behind the work of one of the world’s most exciting visual artists,” said Melissa Chiu, Director of Asia Society Museum.

“We are privileged to have had a long relationship with Sze, who is one of a handful of artists Asia Society Museum commissioned to create site-specific installations during our building reopening in 2001. Asian references, such as Chinese scroll painting and ink drawings, emerge as powerful, but latent and previously unexamined influences in her work that will be explored in this exhibition.”

The exhibition is divided into two parts. A smaller gallery houses earlier works on paper including graphite, ink and collage, lithograph and silkscreen. Some are unconventional portraits in which Sze asked each of her subjects to share a list of key events that shaped their lives. She then pictorialized the individual narratives and developed them into small drawings that reveal the subjects’ personal life stories.

A larger gallery features several new works that play with the boundaries between drawing and sculpture. Using the vertical format of a hanging scroll as a starting point, the works extend from the wall and are drawn to the floor as they examine illusionary space, perspective, and the representation of landscape. Viewed together, the works explore how the viewer’s eye is lead across the gallery space, much like the composition of a drawing.

The exhibition is accompanied by a full-color, 143-page catalogue that includes an interview with the artist conducted by Asia Society Museum Director and Vice President of Global Art Programs Melissa Chiu, and essays by Asia Society Associate Curator Miwako Tezuka and Saskia Sassen, Robert S. Lynd Professor of Sociology, Columbia University.

Sze was born in 1969 in Boston, Massachusetts, to Chinese and American parents. She was awarded a bachelor’s degree from Yale University and later a Master of Fine Arts from the School of Visual Arts in New York. Since the late 1990s she has shown her work in numerous international exhibitions in Kanazawa, Lyon, Venice, Melbourne, and Turin. Her notable solo exhibitions and projects include installations at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 2003, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston in 2002, and Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago in 1999. She is a 2003 MacArthur Fellow.

Sarah Sze, Checks and Balances, 2011. Stone, string, and ink on archival paper. Private collection

Exhibition Funding

Support for Sarah Sze: Infinite Line has been provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation
for the Visual Arts.
This project is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library
Services.
Additional support is provided by Ed Cohen and Victoria Shaw.

Support for Asia Society Museum provided by the Partridge Foundation, a John and Polly Guth Charitable Fund; Asia Society Friends of Asian Art; Asia Society Contemporary Art Council; Arthur Ross Foundation; Sheryl and Charles R. Kaye Endowment for Contemporary Art Exhibitions; Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Fund; National Endowment for the Arts; National Endowment for the Humanities; Hazen Polsky Foundation; New York State Council on the Arts; and New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

About Asia Society Museum and Contemporary Asian Art

In the early 1990s, the Asia Society Museum was one of the first U.S. museums to establish an ongoing program of contemporary Asian art exhibitions. In addition, Asia Society Museum was the first U.S. museum to organize solo shows of now widely recognized artists Montien Boonma, Cai Guo-Qiang, Dinh Q. Lê, Yuken Teruya, and Zhang Huan.

Asia Society Museum is located at 725 Park Avenue (at 70th Street), New York City. The Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 11:00 A.M.–6:00 P.M. and Friday from 11:00 A.M.– 9:00 P.M. Closed on Mondays and major holidays. General admission is $10, seniors $7, students $5, and free for members and persons under 16. Free admission Friday evenings, 6:00–9:00 P.M. The Museum is closed Fridays after 6:00 P.M. from July 1 through Labor Day. AsiaSociety.org/museum

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