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"The End and The Beginning, a new installation by MICAH LEXIER"
2001-10-10 until 2002-04-15
Toronto Sculpture Garden
To celebrate its twentieth anniversary, and in keeping with its mandate to commission new work, the Toronto Sculpture Garden (TSG) marks the milestone with its second special exhibition of the year, The End and The Beginning, a new work by Micah Lexier, a Canadian artist who lives in New York City. The End and The Beginning is a brick sculpture in which an equal number of bricks are added each week, for fifteen weeks, until the sculpture reaches its final form as a straight, rectangular wall measuring 32 feet long, 2 feet deep and 4.5 feet tall. The project is divided into two equal phases: the 15-week building phase, which takes place from September 24 to December 31, 2001, and the 15-week standing phase, which follows in the new year.
Each week, 420 new bricks are added to the existing structure until the work reaches its final form of 6,300 bricks, laid out in a grid of 3 bricks deep, 100 bricks across and 21 bricks high. The bricks are laid in vertically stacked header coursing, with the short end showing and each row of bricks placed directly in line with the bricks below.
The evolution of the artwork will be gradual but noticeable to viewers who pass by the TSG on a regular basis. The work's gradual evolution will mirror many of the viewer's gradual awareness of its existence. As the bricks are added each week, the sculpture will take on a form that is unique to that week. The final wall is like a puzzle made up of 15 equal but different pieces. The work references minimalist sculpture (especially Carl Andre when the wall is only one row, at week 1, or when it is complete, at week 15), and assumes the form of a stylized cityscape as it grows in the various incremental stages.
The End and The Beginning is very much about history and process and about the passage of time and the role of increment in our lives. It is being presented in the Toronto Sculpture Garden's 20th anniversary year and the work's themes are informed and enhanced by this context.