Friday, February 18, 2011

Wolfgang Laib's Conceptual Art:: Rice Houses, Milkstones and Pollen

Wolfgang Laid, Frieze of Life, 2009 [ceramic pottery and white ash. Wood shelving]

Below installation view, 2009, Sean Kelly Gallery, NYC.

Wolfgang Laib (b. 1950, Mentzigen, Germany) finds spirituality in the simplicity of everyday organic substances—milk, pollen, beeswax, rice—that provide sustenance or engender life.Naturally occurring materials, reflecting his scientific training, link with his philosophical studies and the spiritual path provided by Buddhism.

Above: Laib, Without Time --- Without Place--- Without Body, 2001. Hundreds of mounds of rice laid out on a grid, in the center of which are precisely five mounds of luminous yellow pollen.

In 1975 he created his first milk stone in what has become an ongoing series of elemental sculptures.

A rectangular block of polished white marble containing a slight depression on its upper surface, the piece is filled with a thin layer of milk to foster the illusion of a solid form.

His favorite materials include hazelnut pollen, rice, and beeswax in structures of wood and metal.

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