Tony Smith: Smoke has become a LACMA icon since its 2008 installation in the Ahmanson Building atrium, where it animates the transitional space between the museum’s east and west campus. In addition to being one of the largest sculptures ever conceived by Smith (and the largest conceived for an interior space), Smoke reflects the artist’s lifelong exploration of patterns found in organic life and represents a culmination of his work in architecture, painting, drawing, and sculpture.
This exhibition includes approximately 25 objects in all media that trace the work’s evolution, beginning with his early Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired buildings of the 1940s and early 1950s, cellular drawings and paintings from the 1950s, and related sculpture and sketches from the 1960s and early 1970s. Also included will be documentary material related to Smoke’s installation in the 1967 exhibition Scale as Content at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, as well as photography and video from its installation here at LACMA.
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