Mennello Museum of American Art
900 East Princeton Street
Orlando, Florida 32803
Exhibition dates: January 15 - May 15, 2016
Albert Paley: Forged Works incorporates recent works the internationally acclaimed artist completed in the forged process alongside earlier pieces and drawings. Included in this exhibition are several sculptures completed at Steneby, The School of Craft and Design at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden and other smaller works that exemplify Albert Paley’s mastery of the forged technique. Exquisite drawings produced for finished works show the depth of his process, taking the idea from two-dimensional forms to three-dimensional. Albert Paley: Forged Works presents Paley’s commitment to the material, method, form and subject. This gathering of work represents interplay of line and an expressive vitality through the dynamism that exists between rational thought and emotional expression, geometric and organic form, and ancient techniques and art nouveau aesthetics.
Paley has continually pushed the boundaries of his work, its process and materials through several contexts. Forging steel in a form of plasticity and pliability, Paley addresses the transformational change of the material through tapering, swaging, splitting, upsetting and punching. The result is sculpture developed of organic form analogous to processes seen in nature, such as the development of organic form in response to gravity with the emphasis on transition through the quality of line.
Paley emerged in the mid-1960s as an artist goldsmith, and within a decade he became involved with the forging of steel. He is a long-standing leader in the metal sculpture arena, where he is widely recognized for evolving blacksmithing into the realm of public art and commissions. Based in Rochester, New York, Paley has completed more than 60 international public and private site-specific works including the groundbreaking Portal Gates for the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. His work is in several museum collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and the Victoria and Albert Museum and British Museums, London. Paley is the first metal sculptor to receive the coveted Institute Honors awarded by the American Institute of Architects, the AIA’s highest award to a non-architect.
Paley's use of steel can be described as industrial poetry as evident in his large-scale sculptures Interlace and Star in the Mennello Museum’s Sculpture Garden, dedicated in memory of the Honorable Marilyn Logsdon Mennello, the museum’s visionary co-founder. For this exhibition, another of Paley’s large-scale sculptures, Double Twist, will be featured across the street at the Orlando Museum of Art.
“We are delighted to present Albert Paley: Forged Works to our community,” says Shannon Fitzgerald, Executive Director, The Mennello Museum of American Art. “Paley is nationally recognized as a forerunner in monumental sculpture, and it is exciting to consider forging in this exhibition – an ancient method where metal is heated and reheated, strengthened and hammered – into such sinuous, extravagant curves that Paley achieves so brilliantly.”