2017 Exhibitions


David Smith: The White Sculptures
Marking the 50th Anniversary of Storm King’s First Major Acquisition of Sculptures by Smith

Outlooks: Heather Hart
Featuring a Sculpture that is also Performance Space


David Smith, Primo Piano II, 1962. Steel, painted, and bronze.
85 x 158 x 15 in. (215.9 x 401.3 x 38.1 cm).
The Estate of David Smith, New York, courtesy Hauser & Wirth.
© The Estate of David Smith/Licensed by VAGA, New York. Photo by Jerry L. Thompson


Mountainville, NY, November 28, 2016—Storm King Art Center announces its 2017 special exhibitions: David Smith: The White Sculptures and Outlooks: Heather Hart, on view from May 13 to November 12, 2017.

“We’re thrilled to present the extraordinary work of David Smith for our 2017 season, and to highlight an artist who has played a vital role in Storm King’s history,” says Storm King President, John Stern. “Our presentation provides a singular opportunity to see a focused series of Smith’s work, while celebrating the deep connections between his art and Storm King’s commitment to sculpture’s interaction with nature. For our fifth iteration of the Outlooks exhibition series, we’re pleased to present Heather Hart’s interactive sculptural work, which compliments our ambitious contemporary programs.”

David Smith: The White Sculptures is the first exhibition to critically and fully consider the use of the color white within David Smith’s works. At the time of the artist’s death in 1965, eight monumental steel sculptures, painted white, stood in the fields surrounding his home and studio. The White Sculptures will be the first public presentation to unite the entire Primo Piano series: Primo Piano I, II, and III, all from 1962. The exhibition will also feature a selection of Smith’s earliest constructions, created out of white coral gathered by the artist during his stay in the Virgin Islands from 1931-32, and rarely shown since.

The exhibition coincides with the 50th anniversary of Storm King’s acquisition in 1967 of thirteen Smith sculptures, which were sited directly in the landscape. This marked the start of Storm King’s focus on the large-scale, outdoor art installations for which it is now well known. Smith’s eight welded-steel constructions, all painted white, will be installed outdoors on Storm King’s Museum Hill. Smaller sculptures as well as paintings, drawings, and photographs that explore the use of white will be displayed inside Storm King’s Museum Building.

David Smith (1906-1965) was an American artist whose groundbreaking sculptural work forged links to surrealist, abstract expressionist, and postmodern styles. Beginning in the 1950s, and on an increasing scale in the 1960s, Smith began to incorporate open space and employ white both as color and structure in large outdoor sculptures and in spray-painted drawings and paintings.

From the late 1940s on, Smith installed groups of sculptures outside his home in the Adirondack Mountains, contemplating and photographing them in all seasons against the sky, clouds, and surrounding scenery. Seen in Storm King’s natural landscape, whose rolling hills approximate the geography of Smith’s Adirondack property, David Smith: The White Sculptures will echo Smith’s commitment to presenting art and nature as one.

David Smith: The White Sculptures will be accompanied by a fully illustrated publication, as well as a video that documents Smith’s career and his tremendous impact on his peers.

For Outlooks: Heather Hart, the American artist (b. 1975) will install an interactive, sculptural environment in the form of a domestic rooftop, which will be activated by performances, discussions, and events. Hart’s work, which spans social and participatory sculpture, drawing, and printmaking, deals with issues of perception, history, and spirituality.

Among the events hosted within Hart’s created environment at Storm King will be The Black Lunch Table, an ongoing collaboration between Hart and Jina Valentine, an artist and UNC Assistant Professor of Art. First staged in 2005 at the preeminent artist residency Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, this project augments the dominant history of contemporary art with the testimonies of living, working African American artists.

Outlooks, now in its fifth year, is an exhibition series that invites one emerging or mid-career contemporary artist to create a new, site-specific work to be installed at Storm King for a single season.

About David Smith
David Smith was an American sculptor, painter, draftsman, and photographer. Born on March 9, 1906, in Decatur, Indiana, Smith moved in 1926 to New York, where he studied painting at the Art Students League. He began to work in sculpture in the early 1930s, making constructions from wood, wire, stone, aluminum rod, soldered metal, and found materials. He also began to weld metal sculptures using an oxyacetylene torch, producing a group of “heads” made from found tools and machine parts that were likely the first welded-metal sculptures made in the United States. In 1940, Smith moved permanently to Bolton Landing, in upstate New York. There he began to create and install in the fields around his home increasingly large-scale sculptures, many of which—like the unique works that comprise his Tanktotem,

Zig, and Cubi series—reveal the artist’s constantly evolving formal and thematic vocabulary. Smith was awarded Guggenheim Fellowships in 1950 and 1951. He represented the United States at the 1951
International Biennale in Sao Paulo and at the Venice Biennial in 1954 and 1958, and was appointed to the National Council on the Arts by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1965. Smith died in an automobile accident on May 23, 1965.

David Smith’s work is owned by numerous national and international public collections including: the Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, in New York; the Art Institute of Chicago; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Storm King Art Center; Tate Modern, London; the Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum, Duisberg, Germany; and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem. Recent solo exhibitions include presentations at museums and galleries in New York, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC, as well as in London, Paris, Munich, Valencia, and Zurich. Smith’s sculptures are prominently featured in the Royal Academy’s Abstract Expressionism exhibition, which remains on view in London until January 2017, then travels to the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.

About Heather Hart
Through her interdisciplinary practice Heather Hart fuses fabricated and historical belief systems; legends that have been bequeathed through generations mixed with invention and intuition. Based in Brooklyn, NY, Hart was an artist in residence at Joan Mitchell Center, McColl Center of Art + Innovation, Bemis Center for Art, LMCC Workspace, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop, Santa Fe Art Institute, Fine Arts Work Center, and at the Whitney ISP. She is interested in creating site-specific liminal spaces for personal reclamation, and in questioning dominant narratives and proposing alternatives to them. Hart received grants from Creative Capital, Joan Mitchell Foundation, Harpo Foundation, Jerome Foundation, and a fellowship from NYFA. Her work has been included in a variety of publications like The New York Times, Seattle Times, Time Out New York, ARTnews, Art in America, The Art Newspaper, Drawing Papers, The Stranger, and others. Hart’s work has also been exhibited widely including at Franconia Sculpture Park, Socrates Sculpture Park, Seattle Art Museum’s Olympic Sculpture Park, Studio Museum in Harlem, ICA Philadelphia, Art in General, The Drawing Center, MoMA PS1, Museum of Arts and Craft in Itami, Portland Art Center, and the Brooklyn Museum among others. She studied at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Princeton University in New Jersey, and received her MFA from Rutgers University.

About Storm King Art Center
Storm King Art Center is one of the world’s leading sculpture parks. Located in New York’s Hudson Valley about an hour north of New York City, Storm King encompasses over 500 acres of rolling hills, woodlands, and fields of native grasses and wildflowers. This landscape provides a dramatic backdrop for a collection of more than 100 large-scale sculptures by some of the most acclaimed artists of our time, including Alice Aycock, Louise Bourgeois, Alexander Calder, Mark di Suvero, Andy Goldsworthy, Sol Lewitt, Maya Lin, Louise Nevelson, Claes Oldenburg, Nam June Paik, Richard Serra, David Smith, and Ursula von Rydingsvard, among others.

Storm King is located at 1 Museum Road in New Windsor, New York. For information about hours and admission, membership, public transportation and directions, Zipcar discounts, special events, family activities, bike rentals, and the cafe, visit www.stormking.org, or call 845-534-3115.

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Media Contacts:
Meg Blackburn / FITZ & CO / mblackburn@fitzandco.com  / 212-620-7390
Ellen Watkins / FITZ & CO / ewatkins@fitzandco.com / 646-589-0929