Linda Fleming, “Aerious” at Brian Gross Gallery

Installation shot: Linda Fleming: “Aerious” on view through April 29, 2017. 
Photo: John Wilson White, courtesy Brian Gross Fine Art

In Aerious, sculptor Linda Fleming continues to refine her extraordinary exploration of a kind of celestial architecture, devising exquisite patterns of intersecting curved and angular lines into both freestanding forms and wall reliefs of laser-cut and powder coated steel. Three new monumental works—First Light, Apogee, and Dusk (all 2017)—suggest the experience of light and moving shadows over the passage of a day. Fleming spends much of her time now at homes and studios in Colorado and Nevada, and her observations of such natural phenomena inform both her sculpture and the drawings that have been a part of her practice for decades. Three works on paper in soft, glowing shades of pastel complement the sculpture on view, which also includes hand-painted tabletop works in laser-cut plywood. Described by Fleming as maquettes, some have been realized as large-scale works while others are speculative in nature. Although previously not commercially available, these small pieces have long been a part of Fleming’s production.

Arrayed in a linear fashion across the gallery’s expansive floor space, the three large freestanding works all draw attention to a particular aspect of Fleming’s work: a focus on interior space, as expressed both through color and form. By “folding” part of the surface inwards, Fleming pulls the viewer’s eye towards the inside, on the surface of which a second set of interlaced curves has been painted a different color from the exterior. In Dusk, the contrast between the silvery gray of the outside and the interior’s gorgeous celadon green creates a kaleidoscopic visual experience. The size of these three works—large enough to imagine the experience of being enclosed in that interior space—is part of what makes them so compelling. Similarly, by layering different colors in her wall reliefs, particularly Drift (2017), Fleming achieves a dynamism in which a single viewing point is inadequate to take in the effects of light and shadow on changing hues.