Anderson Ranch debuts third annual outdoor sculpture exhibition
"From Here to There" features works by emerging, established artists with connection to the ranch
Back in 2020, near the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Anderson Ranch Arts Center launched an outdoor sculpture exhibit — “Sculpturally Distanced,” the Snowmass Village arts hub called it — to allow the public to still engage with art and the campus amid pandemic restrictions.
It was a success, according to Meriwether McClorey, the artistic programs manager at the ranch. So the initiative continued into 2021, with “(Still) Sculpturally Distanced,” and now continues into 2022, too, with “From Here to There.”
McClorey curated the third-annual outdoor sculpture exhibition for the ranch; the exhibition officially debuted with an opening reception on June 23, though some works have already been on campus for a bit.
The exhibition features 17 different sculptures by about as many different emerging and established artists; it highlights works by “a lot of artists that have a personal connection to the ranch,” McClorey said during the reception.
The lineup includes past summer series speakers, visiting artists and faculty, some current Ranch staff and several established artists who are new to the ranch, like Isamu Noguchi, Virginia Overton and Nari Ward. One artist, Louise Deroualle, has two works in the exhibition; all other creative forces have one.
“I really tried to focus on having a very diverse roster of artists,” McClorey said. That roster includes BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and people of color) artists and women, “who are very often underrepresented in group exhibitions,” McClorey said.
The works don’t all fit into one box of sculptural style. Deroualle’s ceramic sculptures are expressive, abstract shapes. With the Haas Brothers’ “Michelle O-palma,” an enormous marble hand sinks into the earth. Ghada Amer’s “Love Grave” spells “Love” with letters dug 6 feet into the ground, and Tavares Strachan’s “Sometimes Lies Are Prettier” spells as much in pink neon.
But there is a recurring theme in “From Here to There” aside from artists’ connections to the ranch, McClorey said. Many of the pieces are “politically engaged to spark conversation around the topics of race and equality and such things.”
The Haas Brothers piece, for instance, “references the Brothers’ ideal of a utopian, female-run world and female empowerment, and in a sense, signifies the toxic hand of masculinity sinking into the earth,” according to a description of the work on Anderson Ranch’s website.
And Strachan’s piece prompts viewers to “question the authenticity of our perspective” and “acknowledge the tendency of historical narratives to obscure truths or exclude certain figures,” according to the web description.
McClorey suggested that there’s no one way to think about the piece, though.
“You can bring your own ideas and thoughts. … It’s meant to be open to interpretation,” McClorey said in reference to Strachan’s piece. “It really is about the power of knowledge and words.”
Anderson Ranch offers a self-guided tour of the exhibition that people can follow any time, and there also are organized, guided tours at 5:15 p.m. every Monday. Viewers can also experience the sculptures in any order they wish, according to McClorey.
“There’s no real beginning or end,” McClorey said.
For more information, visit andersonranch.org/our-campus/sculpture-exhibition.
While I love to travel, it seems that more and more the best part of any trip I take these days is the part where I come home.