Adrian Villar Rojas at the opening for "The Ungovernables" 2012 at the New Museum, February 14, 2012 © Patrick McMullan

Despite the weekend’s winter chill, spring is just around the corner, and with it comes the annual rooftop commission at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, which will feature new work from Argentinian artist Adrián Villar Rojas for 2017, reports the New York Times.

The artist is calling the exhibition of 20-or-so large-scale sculptures “The Theater of Disappearance,” an umbrella title for several interlinked current and upcoming projects, including a film trilogy that debuted at February’s Berlin Film Festival, and exhibitions at NEON in Athens (June 1–September 24), Kunsthaus Bregenz in Austria (May 6–August 27), and Geffen Contemporary at MOCA in Los Angeles (October 22, 2017–February 26, 2018).

For his inspiration, Villar Rojas will draw on the museum’s encyclopedic collection, creating sculptures that riff off different objects in the Met’s holdings.

Adrián Villar Rojas, “The Evolution of God” (detail), on the High Line at the Rail Yards.
Photo: Sarah Cascone.

The roof garden, named for Iris and Br. Gerald Cantor, celebrates its 30th birthday this year, and has been home to some memorable art installations over the years, including a trio of monumental Jeff Koons balloon dogs in 2008 and Doug and Mike Sarn’s massive Big Bambú in 2010.

At 36, Villar Rojas is the youngest artist ever to be featured.

Hedge Two-Way Mirror Walkabout by Dan Graham with Günther Vogt on the Metropolitan Museum of Art rooftop in 2014. Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Of more recent vintage, 2014 featured a mirrored maze by American artist Dan Graham and Swiss landscape architect Günther Vogt. Last year’s installation, Transitional Object (PsychoBarn), a massive film set/art piece inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s iconic horror film Psycho and an Edward Hopper painting, by British artist Cornelia Parker, attracted over half a million visitors.

In New York, Villar Rojas inaugurated the final section of the High Line in 2014 with a series of sculptures, made of concrete layers with organic materials such as dirt, oyster shells, and clay, as well as old sneakers and clothing, that were designed to disintegrate. The artist was also featured at the Argentinian pavilion at the 2011 Venice Biennale, and was honored with the Canson Paper Prize in 2015.

Adrián Villar Rojas, “The Theater of Disappearance,” is on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, April 14–October 29, 2017.


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