Moholy-Nagy: Future Present, Los Angeles County Museum of Art
On view February 12-June 18, 2017
Completed as Project Architect under Johnston Marklee
This project began at Johnston Marklee in November 2015, when the head curator of Modern Art, Carol Eleil and her research assistant, Deirdre O'Dwyer first shared the constantly growing checklist of artworks with Taryn, who would act as the Project Architect and see this exhibition project through from beginning to end, despite leaving JML full time the following April. This project was incredibly fun to work on through every step. From beginning schematic plans which had only curves, pavilioned spaces with varying roofs, and even one with a single, skinny corridor cutting through the middle (which, as it turns out, we came back to, but in the form of void versus solid!)
The winning scheme was one that breaks the space into 5 equal long galleries, with a perfect appendage in the middle for the Room of the Present. The walls are thickened to encapsulate columns, but this also gives a feeling of permanence, as though this is a very old building and this space was made perfectly for the show. One requirement by the curator was that the works had to be shown chronologically, so we only allowed one entrance into the first gallery, creating an overhang with a slight curve to guide the audience in. From there, the galleries snake around, with a 10' opening on opposite sides as you move through the show. And then there is the infinite hallway, as many are calling it, which cuts on the diagonal through each gallery, growing larger as it moves to its largest opening into Gallery 6. The grey tones on the walls also move from dark to light as you meander through the galleries, so subtlety that if you are like most people, you won't be able to understand that it's occurring and will only notice when you peak through the diagonal cut-through at the end, back to the beginning. This hallway not only plays with the perspectival principals of shadow and scale, but it also provides the ability to see Moholy's work as a whole, while still moving through it chronologically.
I am so proud to have been a part of this marvelous exhibition and final showing of Moholy-Nagy: Future Present, which began at the Guggenheim, then moved to the Art Institute and is now in its final temporary home at LACMA.