Richard Nonas

No-water-in

21 May – 24 September 2011

Richard Nonas was trained not as an artist but as an anthropologist. “Dreams change”, he has written, “I am no longer an anthropologist. That surprises me; an important part of my life has gone without my realizing it. Anthropology was my friend, my serious companion. Anthropology was what took me out of myself, stretched me, and kept me seeing. It opened the world for me. Not just the geographical world, but the actual world of gaps and edges, of contradiction and paradox and constant change. Anthropology destroyed the certainty of my upbringing; it taught me to play with difference. It taught me to dance. —And anthropology's dance was thought itself; its music was ambiguity: the rhythm of clarity slipping way. Anthropology gave me the gift of sliding thought.” After ten years of anthropology, he began to make art. New York, in the early seventies was a hot bed of change in all the arts. Everything seemed possible. Nonas began to seriously make and show work there. From the beginning, he used only ordinary and familiar materials; stones, wood, steel arranged in simple and easily recognized forms. Mario Merz said that the problem for every artist is the same: just adding or removing. Nonas’ work sits on the narrow edge where one becomes the other. Some have called Nonas’ work minimalist, but what he shares with the minimalists is only a vocabulary of simple forms. Nonas's aim is always emotional power and presence, not the cold rigor of minimalist reduction. His work speaks to both the head and the stomach. He says he builds places; objects that feel like places, that change the world like places do.

Exhibition Works

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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974-2011, Wood, 70 x 10 x 5,5 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974-2011, Wood, 13 x 13 x 12 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 73,5 x 58,5 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 2009, wood, cm.40,5x42x13
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 2009, Burned wood, 18,5 x 11 x 7 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 73,5 x 58,5 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Torino T, 2010, Iron, 79 x 49, 5 x 10 cm.
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Richard Nonas, North Slope Series, 1974, Iron, 120 x 13 x 6 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1976, Iron, 8,5 x 6 x 6 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 2010, Iron, 79 x 89 x 10 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1976, Iron, 33,5 x 33,5 x 8 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 2009, Iron, 26 x 28 x 4 cm.
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Richard Nonas, North Slope Series, 1974, wood, 79 x 9 x 4 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Giotto’s tale, 1976, iron, 24 x 15 x 2 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled ( angle ), 1976, iron, cm.40x 9,5x0,5
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Richard Nonas, No-Water-In, 2011, wood, cm.60x410x35
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 56 x 75 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 58 x 74 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 56,5 x 72,5 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, 58 x 74 cm
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Richard Nonas, Senza titolo, 1974, oilstick on paper, cm.56,5x72,5
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1974, oilstick on paper, cm.58x74
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 2005, wood, cm.26,5x7,5x12,5
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Richard Nonas, Untitled, 1976, brass, 18 x 0,5 x 0,5 cm.
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Richard Nonas, Water-in up, 1974-2011, wood, 70 x 10 x 12,5 cm
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Richard Nonas, Water-in down, 1974-2011, wood, 70x10x12,5 cm
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