COLLECTORS ITEM: Sculpture by Robert Smithson
Currently on display at the Art Gallery of Ontario is Sculpture by Robert Smithson, a Gravel Mirror Corner Piece made by the artist in 1968.
Robert Smithson was part of the Earthworks and Land art movements that followed minimalism and brought sculptures out of the gallery into the outside environment and vice versa. Known for his giant, ephemeral earth works such as Spiral Jetty (1970), Smithson also produced a series of works inside the gallery he called non-sites. Smithson often visited gravel pits and deserts to inform his practice, which acted as his "sites," and in moving materials from these locations into the gallery he was creating the "non-site." The use of mirrors and corners created expanded spaces and alternate universes where his installations were accumulated.
Although he made sculpture for less that 10 years before his untimely death, Smithson is considered a very important figure in twentieth century sculpture. Robert Smithson helped expand the field of sculpture and inspired many artists after him to combine installation, conceptual art, and the environment in their practice.