|Larry Kagan - Hershey Art, 2011 - light and steel wire|
all photos by Gary Gold
|Spike, 1977 - cast acrylic|
According to catalog material provided by the Institute, the Troy-based Kagan began as a printmaker before switching to sculpture in the 1970s. One can see evidence of the tactile qualities of prints in some of his first steel works (more on that later), but the earliest body of work represented in this exhibition uses colorless cast acrylic, a medium that plays directly with light within its transparent and translucent forms.
|We're Losing Our Ozone, 1989 - steel|
Later, Kagan would return to playing directly with light, but a middle period in which he picked up industrial scrap as a medium would find him flattening his forms into wall reliefs, in effect drawing with steel. One example, shown above at left, perfectly exemplifies that period in a piece entitled We're Losing Our Ozone, which belongs to the Institute, and is displayed to good effect with a smaller maquette of similar design that led to the monumentally scaled final version.
|Smoke, 1980 - steel|
|Crevice, 1979 - steel|
|Cousin Rose, 1997 - light and found steel|
|Hibiscus, 2015 - light and steel wire|
Several other of the more recent works in the show also reveal a softening of the starkly illustrative style Kagan had adopted with the earlier shadow works, and with that they also add a looseness to the handling of the steel wire that draws the eye away from the shadow image and back into the sculptural form that makes it.
|Light Bulb, 2013 - light and steel wire|
|Stiletto II, 2010 - light and steel wire|