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Robert Irwin is among the most prominent artists of our time. His research probing deeply into how human perception is shaped by physical objects and inhabited environments has had huge influence in the the design world as well as the art world. One of the most pivotal and influential artists working in the United States today, Robert Irwin began as a painter in the 1950’s. Throughout the 1960’s his methodical reduction of signs in painting led to his “breaking of the frame” or painting and objects. As one of the pioneers of the “Light and Space” movement in Los Angeles in the 1970’s and early 80’s, Irwin’s innovative experiments moved towards a direct exploration of aesthetic perception as the fundamental feature of art. This, along with his understanding of the history of Modern Art brought him to expand the role of art to consider working directly in the world, or an art in response, what Irwin calls a “conditional” art. Prime examples being an arts enrichment master plan for the Miami International Airport; the lush Central Gardens at the J. Paul Getty Center; and the architecture and grounds for Dia: Beacon, N.Y. In 1984, Irwin became the first artist to receive the prestigious John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur “Genius” award. Irwin’s work is held in numerous public and private collections worldwide. Robert Irwin lives and works in San Diego, CA.

April 1, 2011 6pm
Kellen Auditorium
Sheila Johnson Design Center
66 Fifth Avenue

AFTERTASTE: Immaterial Environments will investigate aspects of interior space that are seemingly intangible yet highly perceived. What are some of the immaterial qualities that make up our surroundings? How do we better understand elements of interior climate—the physiological and psychological impacts—so that these become material with which we create and educate?