Fine Arts Students Complete Sol LeWitt Wall Drawing Installation on Campus
Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #990 has been installed in Pratt’s Brooklyn campus library after a 10-month-long process that was completed in February. The project was spearheaded in spring 2015 by the six students in Visiting Assistant Professor Angela Conant’s Sculpture Seminar II class, who approached the Estate of Sol LeWitt about installing an original LeWitt Wall Drawing at the Institute.
The work was unveiled on February 25 at an opening reception attended by Pratt Institute President Thomas F. Schutte, Provost Kirk E. Pillow, Fine Arts Chair Deborah Bright, Director of Libraries Russell Abell, Sol LeWitt Catalogue Raisonné Director of Research Lindsay Aveilhe, Conant and her students, and others who were involved in the project. The drawing will be on display in the library for a minimum of two years.
Wall Drawing #990 is sponsored by the Pratt Institute Libraries, the School of Art, and the Fine Arts Department. Under Conant’s supervision, the students took responsibility for each stage of production, including proposing the project to the Estate of Sol LeWitt, Pratt administration, and the Pratt Institute Libraries, and then meticulously installing the drawing in pencil and black marker. The installation process took 10 months and more than 100 volunteers, including Pratt students, staff, faculty, librarians, and administrators as well as volunteers from the greater arts community.
“The students, and all of those who participated, learned LeWitt's concept and intent for this work through direct application,” said Conant. “Wall Drawing #990 has been installed only once before, and photography of this installation will be included in the Sol LeWitt catalogue raisonné.”
Sol LeWitt (1928-2007) was a pivotal figure in the transition of minimalism into conceptual art. He began the Wall Drawings series in 1968 and created more than 1,300 drawings to be installed directly on walls according to his specific—though sometimes ambiguous—instructions.
Wall Drawing #990 was conceived by LeWitt in 2001. His intent for this work, as for all of the Wall Drawings, was that it can be executed by a different group each time it is installed. The drawing specifies laying out 100 points on a wall, randomly yet equally spaced, and connecting each point to the others with straight pencil lines. Measuring 10 feet by 20 feet, the installation in the library required at least two people to draw each line, often using a ladder.
“It’s been truly a great learning opportunity to do an official Sol LeWitt drawing. It helped me realize the value of team effort, especially when it comes to installing art,” said Constanza Valenzuela (B.F.A. Sculpture ’17), a student in the Sculpture Seminar II class. The other students in the class were Alison Allcock (exchange student from Southern Cross University, Australia), Melanie Brennan (B.F.A. Sculpture ‘16), Mira Brunner (B.F.A. Sculpture ’17), Brianne McKain (B.F.A. Sculpture ‘17), and Carly Shiff (B.F.A. Sculpture ’17).
During the spring 2016 semester, the Brooklyn campus library’s Alumni Reading Room will be open to the public to view Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #990 on March 18, April 1, and May 6, between 10 AM to 5 PM (admission is free).