Brown Water

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Object Name: 
Multi-Part Sculpture
Brown Water
Accession Number: 
Assembled W: 426.8 cm, D: 50.8 cm; Individual Elements L: 10.2-19.1 cm, W: 6.4 cm, D: 5.7 cm
Not on Display
Credit Line: 
Purchased with funds from the Arthur Rubloff Residuary Trust
Web Description: 
Brown Water, an installation by the internationally known artist Kiki Smith, was made in 1999 with the Pennsylvania glassblower Tom Farbanish. Smith is a sculptor and a printmaker who uses a variety of materials and techniques in her work. The human body and the natural world are her recurring subjects, and she uses glass as a spiritual element and as a metaphor for sky and water. Smith is one of many artists who have used glass effectively to explore ideas about landscape and nature. In Brown Water, 247 hot-formed, solid drops of glass create a landscape that evokes falling water (the drops spreading randomly across the floor like the patternless spotting of rain) or that constitutes its own body of water (seemingly solid but still requiring navigation). Here, Smith explores the contradictory nature of the material, which is often called a “rigid liquid,” and its wondrous ability to give form to amorphous substances, such as water and light. Assembled dimensions variable.
Pace Gallery LLC, Source
Primary Description: 
Transparent brown and colorless soda lime Spruce Pine glass; hot-worked, iridized, assembled. 247 solid, tear-drop shaped elements to be arranged on a flat surface.
As Long as It's Pink: The Sexual Politics of Taste (2010) illustrated, p. 122; BIB# 113243
The Corning Museum of Glass Annual Report 2007 (2008) illustrated, p. 15; BIB# AI90242
Contemporary Glass Sculptures and Panels: Selections from the Corning Museum of Glass (2008) illustrated, p. 37, 176-177 (fig. 74, plate 64); BIB# 107478
The Gather (2008) illustrated, p. 12;
Kiki Smith (2005) illustrated, p. 195; BIB# 90442
Glass Seriously (2005) illustrated, p. 3, bottom; BIB# 139444
Kiki Smith (2005) illustrated, p. 195; BIB# 90442
H20 (2003)
Immersion (2003)
Kiki Smith: You are the Sunshine of My Life (1999)