When so many galleries are scrambling to put on shows of work made during quarantine, a slower exhibition—six sculptures made in the last three years—is a welcome respite. For Martin Puryear's latest exhibition at Matthew Marks Gallery, the artist brings five sculptures originally presented at the 2019 Venice Biennale, where he represented the United States.
The highlight of the exhibition may be the queenly A Column for Sally Hemings (2019) [pictured]. Its base was modeled after Monticello, Thomas Jefferson's home in Virginia—he was the mixed-race slave Sally Hemings's owner, and fathered children by her—and it's topped with a cast-iron shackle and a stake. But it emanates power—not bound, but spellbinding.
Martin Puryear, A Column for Sally Hemings, 2019. Cast iron, painted tulip poplar, 80 × 15¾ × 15¾ inches.