Joel Shapiro: An Interview

1982 | 00:20:00 | United States | English | B&W | 4:3 | Video

Collection: On Art and Artists, Interviews, Single Titles

Tags: Blumenthal/Horsfield Interviews, Interview, Sculpture, Visual Art

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Joel Shapiro (b.1941) came to prominence in the early 1970s with his representational miniatures of everyday objects like chairs and houses. Since then he has become one of the most exhibited American sculptors. Shapiro’s vocabulary consists largely of rectangular volumes, with which he has created a body of work dancing on the line between abstraction and figuration. The human form has been a major theme in Shapiro’s geometric expression. But even when he is elaborating chaotic forms with more architectural references, his constrained set of shapes expresses an astonishing level of figural energy.

"My work was always sort of 'rangey', it was never specifically located in one place," he says in this interview with Kate Horsfield. "I would complete a body of work and move on to th next body of work, and there would be overlaps...whatever I could get out of it, I'd get out of it...and then move ahead."

A historical interview originally recorded in 1982 and re-edited in 2005 with support from the Lyn Blumenthal Memorial Fund.