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Jaume Plensa’s Humming came to deCordova Sculpture Park almost ten years ago, generating innumerable reminders of how powerful sculpture can be. As a guide at the park, I’ve seen many visitors engage with this tall translucent entrancing marble head. Humming is a reliable source of stories and questions about art processes. Also it has brought perspective to other art in the park, and it has led me to more sculpture by the same artist as well. An earlier post focused on Plensa’s Alchemist at MIT. This current post ties in with Plensa’s towering cast-iron Inés, 2013 at Harvard Business School and to an extended awareness of other places, i.e. NY, in the United States to see this artist’s work.
Visitors at deCordova this summer had noted that Humming was like a large head, also in sections, at the Harvard Business School. Their comments motivated me to track down Plensa’s sculpture Inés, where it had been installed four years ago, barely a mile from my home.
” Inés was one of the four sculptures included in 1004 Portraits at Millennium Park. Her portrait, in the artist’s words, is “all at once specific, anonymous, universal, and tranquil.” Shown with her eyes closed in a state of meditation or dreaming, her serene expression inspires contemplation. Like a hologram, the sculpture changes and shifts perspectives when viewed from different angles.” ( quote excerpt from Contemporary Art, Harvard Business School ) Locate on Harvard Business School Contemporary Sculpture Map.
“Alchemist is related to Plensa’s other works, Nomade (2010) and El Alma Del Ebro (2010), which are made of randomly arranged stainless steel letters of the alphabet, painted white and arranged in the shape of a person sitting with knees drawn up to the chest. However, in the place of letters of the alphabet, Plensa’s work for MIT is created from numeric symbols, as an “homage to all the researchers and scientists“ that have contributed to scientific and mathematical knowledge.” ( quote excerpt from MIT Public Art Map )
“Jaume Plensa explores the connection between humanity and nature in his work. In Carlota (oak), Julia (oak), Laura Asia (oak), and Wilsis (oak), 2019—four bronze portraits originally carved from oak—Plensa captures a moment of quiet reflection, evoking silence and stillness in a bustling world. Witness the installation of Plensa’s work at the Parrish below. “ (excerpt quote from Parrish Art Museum, Field of Dreams, which includes a video, about 7 minutes, documenting installation processes)
Jaume Plensa’s website includes many great images of his public art and sculpture, plus an intriguing documentary: Jaume Plensa, Can You Hear Me? video, about six minutes, including Plensa at various sites worldwide