February 17, 2009

A Serra Named Bellamy

11/09 UPDATE: Or not. Writing about her visit to the stored Serra for the journal Afterall, Mary Walling Blackburn reports that it is not Bellamy after all. Bellamy is currently in England. There is, in fact, an I-beam on-site spray-painted "Bellamy," [visible in Nathan's photos below], but that is apparently not a nametag or some such. [In fact, the beams are used for stabilizing the pieces during transport. They can be seen in use in Art21's series of installation photos for Joe at the Pulitzer Foundation in St. Louis.] So that begs the question: what Torqued Spiral is it, then? Inquiring minds might want to ask the artist next time they see him. I know I will.

The story of the Richard Serra sculptures stored along the Bronx waterfront is filling out, thanks to Nathan Kensinger, who went with Jake "The Dobster" Dobkin on their recent photoblogging expedition. A couple of highlights:

  • Now we know which torqued spiral ellipse this is: Bellamy, named after Serra's late friend and early dealer, Richard Bellamy. Bellamy founded the Green Gallery, though he only started showing Serra's work in the late 1960's after the gallery closed. Bellamy passed away in 1998, just as Serra had begun making his torqued ellipse and spiral sculptures.
  • Apparently, there's a nameplate welded inside the sculpture. Can't say I've noticed that before.
  • Turns out we'd seen Bellamy before, at Gagosian in 2002 and the Venice Biennale in 2001. Considering we had to walk to the end of the Arsenale in the August heat, and then brave a horrible Vanessa Beecroft installation to see it, Nathan and Jake's Port Morris fencehopping adventure doesn't sound all that rough anymore.
  • And the biggest piece of news from Nathan's post, is that the Serras parked there are Serra's. Which, given the storer's acknowledged love of rust and industrial grit, and now knowing the personal resonance of the particular sculpture, seems obvious. Or maybe not so much.

Anyway, Nathan's got much more to reveal, and some sweet photos to accompany it. Previously: Serra from the block

Since 2001 here at greg.org, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting greg.org that time.

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first published: February 17, 2009.

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