Annual Rings

Dennis Oppenheim American

Not on view

During the 1960s, a number of artists-including Oppenheim, Robert Smithson, and Walter De Maria-sought to liberate sculpture from the pedestals of the museum and made work that was inextricably bound to its site. In this piece, Oppenheim enlarged the patterns of the tree's growth and, by shoveling pathways in the snow, transposed the annual rings to the frozen waterway that divides the United States and Canada and also divides their time zones. By juxtaposing man-made national and temporal boundaries, Oppenheim opened to question the relative values of the ordering systems by which we live.

Annual Rings, Dennis Oppenheim (American, Electric City, Washington 1938–2011 New York), Gelatin silver print(s), ink on paper, photomechanical prints, wax crayon

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