David Kordansky Will Now Represent Acclaimed Sculptor Simone Leigh on the West Coast

Kordansky will share representation with Luhring Augustine in New York.

Simone Leigh, Sentinel (2019). Installation view of
Simone Leigh, Sentinel (2019). Installation view of "Simone Leigh: Loophole of Retreat" at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.
©SRGF, New York, Photograph by David Heald. Image courtesy of the artist, Luhring Augustine, New York, and David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles

Los Angeles dealer David Kordansky is now the West Coast representative of Simone Leigh, an artist whose career has been rapidly on the rise in recent years. She continues to work with Luhring Augustine gallery in New York.

The artist’s need for a California gallery may have been prompted by Leigh’s lauded solo show at the Hammer Museum in 2016, though Kordansky said of the arrangement in an email to artnet News: “I don’t know if I’d say, ‘on the West Coast,’ but rather, ‘from the West Coast.'”

“California is as much a launching pad as a home for us,” he said. “We want to thoughtfully broaden Simone’s visibility geographically through public and private connections. But also expand the conversation contextually, through other lenses, histories, and traditions.”

Simone Leigh's <i>Brick House</i> on the High Line's Plinth. Image courtesy of the artist and High Line Art.

Simone Leigh’s Brick House on the High Line’s Plinth. Image courtesy of the artist and High Line Art.

Kordansky first encountered Leigh’s work at her solo exhibition at Luhring Augustine last fall. “The connection was immediate,” he says. “Her exquisite and enigmatic sculptures brought me back, in an entirely new way, to the art I first fell in love with as a young student in the early 1990s: the practices of Janine Antoni, Robert Gober, and Ann Hamilton, addressing identity and narrative through materially poignant objects and intimate installations. This is an approach—equal parts heart and mind and matter—that resonates very deeply with me.”

Leigh’s practice includes sculpture, video, and installation and often reflects an exploration of black female subjectivity and ethnography. Her work frequently incorporates materials and forms associated with art from Africa and the African diaspora. Last October, Leigh was named the winner of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s Hugo Boss award, which comes with $100,000 and a solo museum show. Leigh’s “Loophole of Retreat” is on view at the Guggenheim now through October 27.

Leigh is also the inaugural artist for the High Line’s new “Plinth” program, and her monumental sculpture, Brick House, goes on view there today. Leigh has also received a Foundation for Contemporary Art Grant (2018), a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship (2016), and the Anonymous Was a Woman Award (2016).

Kordansky, who also represents artists Andrea Büttner, Mai-Thu Perret, Lauren Halsey, Rashid Johnson, Huma Bhabha, and Ruby Neri, says his gallery’s program provides an opportune context for Leigh by “constellating her work with equally singular artists advancing feminism, empathy, figuration, beauty, ceramics, and the marginalized.”

Kordansky says his gallery will work “very closely and collaboratively” with Luhring Augustine. “The art world is dynamic and growing, but still largely based on interpersonal conversations; we want to add new supporters and structures to the discussion.”


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