Dia Art Foundation to Present Keith Sonnier’s Dis-Play II (1970) at the Dan Flavin Art Institute in Bridgehampton from July 1, 2018, to May 26, 2019
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 30, 2018
New York, NY – Dia Art Foundation will present a new exhibition by Keith Sonnier at the Dan Flavin Art Institute in Bridgehampton, New York, from July 1, 2018, to May 26, 2019. Sonnier’s exhibition will feature Dis-Play II (1970)—an immersive installation of foam rubber, fluorescent powder, strobe light, black light, neon, plywood, and glass—and Film and Videos 1968–1977—a decade-long exploration into sound and media work. The exhibition in Bridgehampton brings together Sonnier’s ongoing interest in film, light, and experiential art environments.
Alongside peers such as Carl Andre, Dan Flavin, Eva Hesse, Bruce Nauman, and Jackie Winsor, Sonnier specifically sought out and utilized nontraditional and ephemeral materials in his art production beginning in the late 1960s. In his own words: “We made art that was defined by its defiance of the traditional idea of what could be considered art.” While superficially similar to artists working contemporaneously in industrial or found materials, Sonnier pursued what he termed “psychologically loaded” materials with strong connotations to their non-art usages, notably neon. Dis-Play II features five elements in foam, glass, and plywood that are scattered and coated with pigment powder. In the darkened space, black light, strobe light, and neon illuminate the pigment and emit a fluorescent glow.
“Dis-Play II embodies how Keith Sonnier challenged preconceived notions of sculpture,” said Jessica Morgan, Nathalie de Gunzburg Director, Dia Art Foundation. “By presenting Sonnier’s ephemeral neon installation downstairs from Dia’s permanent display of Dan Flavin’s work, Dia is connecting Minimal and Postminimal practices through their material basis. We are delighted to present Dis-Play II in tandem with Sonnier’s survey at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, New York, allowing audiences to experience his diverse practice on the East End of Long Island, where he has lived since 1989.”
First exhibited in Sonnier’s solo exhibition at the Castelli Warehouse in New York in 1970, Dis-Play II has been shown with Film and Videos 1968–1977 since 2008. Sonnier’s pioneering role in film, oftentimes overlooked in favor of his neon sculptures, is here brought together with his concurrent exploration of nontraditional materials.
From July 1, 2018, to January 27, 2019, the Parrish Art Museum will present Keith Sonnier: Until Today, a comprehensive survey of Sonnier’s influential practice. This solo exhibition will include more than thirty works from 1967 to the present. Following the presentation at the Parrish, Until Today will travel to the New Orleans Museum of Art.
Keith Sonnier was born in Mamou, Louisiana, in 1941. He graduated with a BA from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in 1963 and received an MFA from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, in 1966. The Musée d’art moderne et d’art contemporain in Nice, France, presented a solo exhibitionin 2015 of Sonnier’s light work, which included Dis-Play II. His practice has been the subject of solo exhibitions a tprominent international venues including Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin (2002–03), Kunsthaus Bregenz, Austria (1999), Sprengel Museum, Hannover (1993), Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC (1989), Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk, Virginia (1988), Museum of Modern Art, New York (1971), and Stedelijk van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, Netherlands (1970). Sonnier lives and works in New York City and Bridgehampton, New York.
Dia Art Foundation
Founded in 1974, Dia Art Foundation is committed to advancing, realizing, and preserving the vision of artists. At Dia:Beacon and Dia:Chelsea in Beacon and New York City, Dia fulfills its mission by commissioning new projects, organizing temporary exhibitions, displaying its collection of art from the 1960s and 1970s, and presenting programs of public engagement. Dia also maintains several long-term sites including: Walter De Maria’s The New York Earth Room (1977) and The Broken Kilometer (1979), Max Neuhaus’s Times Square (1977), and Joseph Beuys’s 7000 Eichen (7000 Oaks, which was inaugurated at Documenta 7 in 1982), all of which are located in New York City; the Dan Flavin Art Institute (established in 1983) in Bridgehampton, New York; De Maria’s The Lightning Field (1977) in western New Mexico; Robert Smithson’s Spiral Jetty (1970) in Great Salt Lake, Utah; Nancy Holt’s Sun Tunnels (1973–76) in Great Basin Desert, Utah; and De Maria’s The Vertical Earth Kilometer (1977) in Kassel, Germany.
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