Working with translucent and reflective materials, Alyson Shotz challenges traditional notions of sculpture as closed, massive, or weighty. Her airy, open-form sculptures define volumes without mass. Expanding on the strung, translucent, or open-form sculpture of predecessors like Richard Deacon, Naum Gabo, Gego, and Fred Sandback, Shotz’s work investigates the finer points of our perception and experience of the physical world.
For Sightings, Shotz created Wave Equation, a group of complex, open, volumetric forms made of stainless steel wire strung with silvered glass beads. A pair of elliptical rings was suspended from the ceiling, the reflective strands cascading to another ring near the floor, creating looping, bulging forms. Each exterior ellipse contained a smaller, concentric ring with additional beaded strands defining shapes in their interiors. The rings near the floor were angled in directions opposite to each other and to the neighboring pair, creating a subtle sense of opposing and unequal forces. The ample pair of interior/exterior forms of Wave Equation transformed the Corner Gallery at the Nasher Sculpture Center into a transparent, reflective, experiential environment. In addition, Shotz linked the installation to the adjacent spaces, installing a related geometric string drawing on the wall in the café and programming the music for the spaces in collaboration with composer Simon Fisher Turner.