Sheila Hicks – High Line Art – Public installation
Hop, Skip, Jump, and Fly: Escape from Gravity
A large-scale, vibrant, fiber installation spanning over 300 meters.
June 2017 – March 2018
On The High Line at the Western Rail Yards
Presented by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art has announced a new High Line Commission by American artist Sheila Hicks. The work, titled Hop, Skip, Jump, and Fly: Escape from Gravity, is a large-scale installation spanning over 1,000 feet at the Western Rail Yards, beginning at 30th Street and 11th Avenue. The installation is on view from late June 2017 through March 2018.
For over 50 years, American artist Sheila Hicks has redefined the boundaries of fiber as a medium, creating a distinctive body of work that falls between the fields of fine art, craft, design, and architecture. Having studied at the Yale University School of Art under the tutelage of Josef Albers, a modern master of art education and color theory, Hicks is a sculptor of color just as much as of fiber. Her works range in scale from small minimes—weavings no larger than a half-sheet of letter paper—to immersive indoor and outdoor architectural environments composed of lavish color and texture. In 1957, Hicks was awarded a Fulbright scholarship which provided her the opportunity to travel to Chile, marking the beginning of a transformative lifelong practice of teaching, research and art-making throughout South America, Mexico, South Africa, Morocco, and India, documented via weavings, writings, and photography.
For her High Line Commission, Hicks draws inspiration from the many kinetic elements that dance around the High Line: the ballet of construction vehicles at the Rail Yards; the multitudinous interwoven layers of construction mesh that cover buildings, scaffolding, and streetscapes; unfinished architectural lattices; and lace of hanging crane cables. Her vibrant installation comprised of twisting tubes of various types of colored fiber will crawl along the rails at the Western Rail Yards, surprising and delighting passerby.
“We’re thrilled to present Hicks’s first artwork in a public park, which will enchant adults and children alike visiting the High Line,” says Cecilia Alemani, Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director and Chief Curator of High Line Art. “Drawing from the varying textures, heights, and shapes of the park and its surroundings, Hicks captures the element of play in her colorful installation which will squiggle up, down, and around this unique section of the High Line. We’re especially excited to see how the installation changes with the rotating backdrop of the four seasons.”
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Sheila Hicks (b. 1934, Hastings, Nebraska) lives and works in Paris, France. Recent solo exhibitions have been presented internationally at venues including the Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska (2016); The Hayward Gallery, London, United Kingdom (2015); Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France (2014); and the TextielMuseum, Tilburg, The Netherlands (2014). Her work has been featured in international exhibitions including the Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2014); Glasgow International, Glasgow, Scotland (2016); The Hangzhou Triennial of Fiber Art, Hangzhou, China (2016); and the 57th Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy (2017). Sheila Hicks is represented in the United States by Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York.
ABOUT HIGH LINE ART
Presented by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art commissions and produces public art projects on and around the High Line. Founded in 2009, High Line Art presents a wide array of artwork including site-specific commissions, exhibitions, performances, video programs, and a series of billboard interventions. Curated by Cecilia Alemani, the Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director & Chief Curator of High Line Art, and produced by Friends of the High Line, High Line Art invites artists to think of creative ways to engage with the uniqueness of the architecture, history, and design of the High Line and to foster a productive dialogue with the surrounding neighborhood and urban landscape.
Major support for High Line Art comes from Donald R. Mullen, Jr. and The Brown Foundation, Inc. of Houston. Additional funding is provided by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. High Line Art is supported, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council and from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.