Anna Kristensen, Scrollwork, 2020, borosilicate glass and oak, 61.50 x 714.50 x 30.00 cm, TCG22255
(photo: Felicity Jenkins)


In her Brooklyn neighborhood, the artist walks alongside hundreds of wrought iron fences each day. Their decorative, vernacular shapes politely but firmly trace lines between brownstones and sidewalks in hard iron. Repetitive curves, often covered in layer after layer of dripping enamel paint, cast rhythmic shadows and demarcate public and private space. As you pass alongside these fences their patterned volumes telescope and contract like visual springs, but each S is ever so slightly different. This subtle irregularity lends a softness to these otherwise measured patterns. Scrollwork translates wrought iron Ss into flameworked glass Ss, preserving the same handmade traces from the ironwork. Both materials are supple and nearly liquid when hot, but when cool, they become rigid. Unlike iron, glass is unmistakably fragile and easily catches and refracts light instead of casting hard shadows. When standing alongside the glass fence, it almost disappears, only to compound upon itself when seen from the end. The way a sheet allows us to see a ghost’s form, the supportive wooden structure that holds these transparent Ss in the air gives this spectral fence its form, in an echo of the latticeworks and supports throughout Kristensen’s body of work.

- notes on artwork by Rob Smith in conversation with the artist

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