The late Walter De Maria is a sculptor whose geometric pieces fill large rooms and bring a peace and tranquility to these often inner city spaces.
I first saw Maria’s work 360˚ I Ching / 64 Sculptures, (1981) at Dia Beacon, a wonderful open art gallery about 90min north of New York City.
I discovered after seeing his grand, precise and mathematical work that he was, in fact, the drummer for the Velvet Underground. All the patterns that I was seeing turned into rhythms in my head, as I tried to decipher the logic of the structure.
Later, I found more of De Maria’s works scattered around New York City. One, the Earth Room (1977), is exactly what is sets out to be – a large room in the middle of Manhattan, filled with soil.
The Broken Kilometer (1979), just down the road, also has a very literal name. It is made up of 500 two-metre long solid brass rods.
The scale of all these pieces make you constantly rethink the way we as humans use space, especially in a densely populated metropolis like New York.