Indiana University Bloomington IU Bloomington IUB


Sol LeWitt was one of the foremost artists associated with both Minimalism, which relies on simple geometric forms, and Conceptualism, a movement that sought to redefine the processes of artistic creation and to critique the traditions of Western art. For the Conceptual artists of the 1960s and ’70s, the ideas underpinning a work of art took precedence over traditional visual concerns. LeWitt’s approach to art-making in this context was mathematical and rational. In the mid-1960s, he began constructing serial and modular works based on a geometric system that relied on an underlying grid structure. The stair-step form of 1-2-3-4-5-4-3-2-1, with its cubic building blocks and numerical title, reveals the basic elements of LeWitt’s artistic system. The uniform modules used in the sculpture could be configured in an almost infinite variety of ways and assembled from a range of materials yet they all conform to a basic mathematical concept.

Sol LeWitt
American, 1928‒2007
Painted aluminum
25 ¼ x 166 x 32 ¾ in. (64.1 x 421.6 x 83.2 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, 80.11

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