Louise Kruger: Menagerie

September 12 – October 26, 2019

Press Release

Louise Kruger: Menagerie
September 12 – October 26, 2019
Open House Reception: Saturday, September 14th from 12:00 – 6:00 pm

Bookstein Projects is pleased to announce an exhibition of sculpture by Louise Kruger. This is the artist’s sixth show with Lori Bookstein and the first with Bookstein Projects.

This exhibition will present a collection of animal sculptures including a dog, a fish, a frog, an owl, a porcupine, a spider and a toucan. Executed by the artist between the mid-fifties and the mid-seventies, these sculptures highlight the artist’s mastery of materiality. Some of the sculptures, such as Frog, are sculpted out of a burnished gold-polychromed wood, which in this case, mimics the amphibian’s moist, glistening skin. In another piece, Porcupine, Kruger seems to foretell her time spent in 1966-67 with the Ashanti peoples in Kumasi, Ghana, which further expanded her vast knowledge of African narrative sculpture. Indeed, her use of nails to articulate the individual quills along the animal’s back calls to mind the Nkisi Nkondi devotional sculptures in which nails or blades are driven into the sculpture to summon the spirits during consultation. This kind of inventive use of materials is further demonstrated in the articulated joints of Spider and Dog, in which the legs of the spider or tail of the dog can be manipulated into various positions. This overall sense of implied motion coupled with the artist’s acute sense of proportion is what makes her animals seem so dynamic.

Louise Kruger’s (1924 - 2013) formal education spans decades and continents. From 1942 to 1945, she attended Scripps College, Claremont, CA, followed by continued studies at The Art Students League of New York. In addition to her formal education, she studied woodworking and joinery with Captain Sundquist, a shipbuilder in New Jersey and traditional metal-working techniques at the Guastini foundry in Pistoia, Italy as well as her educational sojourn with the Ashanti people in Kumasi, Ghana. The artist has been exhibited widely including exhibitions at Martha Jackson Gallery, Schoelkopf Gallery, Landmark Gallery, and Condeso/Lawler Gallery. Most notably, in 1953, she was included in the New Talent show at the Museum of Modern Art, New York. Kruger’s work is included in major public collections in the US, Europe and Latin America including the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the New York Public Library, New York.

Louise Kruger: Menagerie will be on view from September 12 – October 26, 2019. An open house reception will be held on Saturday, September 14th from 12:00-6:00pm. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 am to 6:00 pm. For additional information and/or visual materials, please contact the gallery at (212) 750-0949 or by email at info@booksteinprojects.com.