El Anatsui, Womb of Time, 2014.

El Anatsui

Kinderhook, New York

The School

Gallerist Jack Shainman’s outpost of culture in upstate New York did a terrific job of exhibiting 50 years of work by the Ghana-born, Nigeria-based artist El Anatsui. Now in his 70s, he has had a long, prolific career fashioning shimmering panels out of bottle caps linked to each other with copper wire. After beginning his artistic career as a good painter, El Anatsui is now known as a remarkable sculptor. Early on, he worked with African ceramics. The changes that he made to existing ceramic masks signified a willingness to combine his personal cultural past, understood at least partly as colonized, with what amounts to a visionary reification of Western insights into abstraction. The School’s renovated space, now a year old, shows just how novel and ambitious a gallerist Shainman has become. …see the entire review in the print version of December’s Sculpture magazine.