[The] Gwenfritz is back where it belongs. The National Museum of American History has conserved Alexander Calder’s site-specific stabile and reinstalled it in a reflecting pool on the building’s west end, 30 years after it was displaced by a vintage band shell from a mental hospital.
The removal of Gwenfritz in violation of the artist’s intentions was cited as a contributing precedent to attempts to move Richard Serra’s Tilted Arc from its site in Federal Plaza a few months later.
Anyway, it all sounds good, and from the NMAH’s flickr feed, it looks good. “It’s always great when you’re able to honor the artist’s vision,” said Smithsonian American Art Museum sculpture curator Karen Lemmey, in a way that unsettles me, perhaps because it reminds me of the offhandedly mercenary Lumbergh in Office Space.
Conservation of Alexander Calder’s Gwenfritz [eyelevel.si.edu]
Previously, 2010: After 26 Years, The Smithsonian Will Put Alexander Calder’s Gwenfritz Back Where It Belongs.