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b. 1971, Switzerland

Carol Bove Biography

Carol Bove is an artist who exhibits mastery over a wide range of materials including steel, driftwood, peacock feathers and I-beams, and transforms them into conceptual assemblage artworks and sculptures. Her notable achievements creating supersized steel sculptures amidst the male-dominated world of heavy-metal sculptors earned her the title of 'Sculpture's Woman of Steel', so dubbed by The New York Times in 2016.

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Born in 1971 in Geneva to American parents, Carol Bove was raised in Berkeley, California, before she moved to New York and graduated from New York University in 2000. She first became notable for clean and Minimalist assemblages of multiple found objects. In her earlier work Adventures in Poetry (2002), the artist curated 29 books and nine periodicals from or in emulation of the 1960s and 1970s, sparsely placed on three minimally adorned wood shelves, sometimes closed, sometimes open to double-page spreads of monochromatic photographs. The framing and displaying of things was the recurring theme in her artworks, as she arranged and preserved books and objects in their original states in the shelf installations without hegemonising them. Since 2005, she had been using natural materials more often alongside found objects. In Triguna (2012) and Heraclitus (2014), for example, she transformed a diverse range of materials including seashells, feathers, and found objects into delicate sculptures supported by lean, welded frames.

Despite earning critical acclaim for her elegant, minimalistic artwork, Bove continued to seek new inspirations. From 2013 to 2014, she displayed seven site-specific, large-scale sculptures for the exhibition titled Caterpillar at High Line at the Rail Yards in New York. The ensemble comprised of rustic I-beams protruding vertically from the railed ground, such as A Glyph (2013) and Cow Watched by Argus (2013), contrasted with the artist's iconic smooth tubular sculptures such as Celeste (2013). In 2016, in relation to developments in her work, Bove told W magazine that she wanted to 'open up' and 'see something that's actually kind of garish and tacky'. In the former Brooklyn brick factory she took on as her new studio in the same year, the artist began to manipulate large metal pieces with the help of an enormous overhead gantry. 'Not even the big work is prefigured by a drawing', she said in a conversation with Wallpaper* in 2018.

The metal sculptures showcased in Bove's solo exhibition Polka Dots at David Zwirner, New York, in 2016 were some of her more ambitious works. The giant tube-like sculpture From the Sun to Zurich (2016) was more than five metres wide, and the vividly coloured work First Blue Column (2016) measured up to more than 2.6 metres in height. Twisted and scrunched, the stainless steel was imbued with a malleable quality that almost felt like drapery.

Carol Bove's artworks are often displayed in open spaces. In 2017, her large-scale sculptures were installed in The Contemporary Austin's Betty and Edward Marcus Sculpture Park at Laguna Gloria, and presented in the courtyard of the Swiss Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale. Collections that feature her works include The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and the Institute of Contemporary Art / Boston.

Chelsea Ma | Ocula | 2019

Carol Bove Featured Artworks

Icon by Carol Bove contemporary artwork
Carol BoveIcon, 2019Stainless steel, urethane paint
14 x 23 1/2 x 11 3/4 inches
David Zwirner
Cor Caroli by Carol Bove contemporary artwork
Carol BoveCor Caroli, 2019Stainless steel, urethane paint
15 7/8 x 17 3/8 x 19 3/4 inches
David Zwirner
Proof by Carol Bove contemporary artwork
Carol BoveProof, 2019Stainless steel, found steel, urethane paint
49 5/8 x 49 7/8 x 44 inches
David Zwirner
Offenbach Barcarolle by Carol Bove contemporary artwork
Carol BoveOffenbach Barcarolle, 2019Found steel, stainless steel, urethane paint
82 x 68 1/4 x 52 1/2 inches
David Zwirner

Carol Bove Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Miami Online | Online Viewing Room at David Zwirner, New York
Closed
2–8 December 2019 Group Exhibition Miami Online | Online Viewing Room David ZwirnerOnline Only
Contemporary art exhibition, Carol Bove, Ten Hours at David Zwirner, Hong Kong
Closed
1 November–14 December 2019 Carol Bove Ten Hours David ZwirnerHong Kong
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Difference Engine at Lisson Gallery, New York
Closed
29 June–7 August 2018 Group Exhibition Difference Engine Lisson GalleryWest 24th Street, New York

Carol Bove Represented By

David Zwirner contemporary art gallery in 19th Street, New York, USA David Zwirner New York, London, Paris, Hong Kong

Carol Bove In Ocula Magazine

Art Basel Viewing Rooms: Advisory Highlights Ocula Insight Art Basel Viewing Rooms: Advisory Highlights By Ocula Art Advisory, Basel

Lucia Laguna, Paisagem n. 122 (2020) at Fortes D'Aloia & Gabriel In Lucia Laguna's 'Paisagem' (Landscapes) series we see the blending of exterior and interior worlds, with Brazil's abundant vegetation on full display. Plants and flowers rendered in bright tones are set against a rough, grid-like structure that suggests architectural...

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Galleries Augment Basel Online With Clicks-and-Mortar Exhibitions Ocula News Galleries Augment Basel Online With Clicks-and-Mortar Exhibitions Berlin, 16 June 2020

In Berlin, where the pandemic permits, digital viewing rooms are being remade offline. Elsewhere, galleries are mounting ever richer online presentations.

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Art Basel in Hong Kong 2019: A Post-mortem Ocula Report Art Basel in Hong Kong 2019: A Post-mortem By Diana d’Arenberg, Hong Kong

Ocula contributor Diana d'Arenberg gives her annual post-mortem of Hong Kong's Art Basel week, running through some of the highs and lows of the fair's seventh edition, which opened to the public from 29 to 31 March 2019.

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Carol Bove In Related Press

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10 Hong Kong Art Exhibitions To See In November 2019 Related Press 10 Hong Kong Art Exhibitions To See In November 2019 5 November 2019, Hong Kong Tatler

Sinuous sculptures crafted from steel, post-WWII abstract paintings and celebrity portraits by Annie Leibovitz are just a few of the highlights of this month's exhibitions

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Carol Bove on crushing, crashing and twisting heavy metal into better shape Related Press Carol Bove on crushing, crashing and twisting heavy metal into better shape 31 May 2018, Wallpaper*

On a snowy day in March, all sorts of things are happening in Carol Bove’s studio. An assistant in a white Tyvek suit is stripping down a sculpture – one of the seven lively blue forms that stood like an abstract family outside the Swiss Pavilion in Venice during the 2017 art biennale. Another is welding a huge steel tube, which seems to have...

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Giardini Pavilion Highlights from the 57th Venice Biennale Related Press Giardini Pavilion Highlights from the 57th Venice Biennale 11 May 2017, Whitewall

JAPANESE PAVILION, Takahiro Iwasaki: Turned Upside Down, It's a Forest Takahiro Iwasaki has created a multifaceted spatial experience of viewing the Itsukushima Shrine located in Hiroshima, where the artist was born, raised, and continues to work. Viewers can see the site from the perspective of a bird, insect, or fish, skewing the perception...

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Frieze New York: Modern Complexities Related Press Frieze New York: Modern Complexities 29 April 2017, Aesthetica

This year sees Frieze New York host its sixth edition at Randall’s Island Park from 5 to 7 May. A collection of ambitious presentations from leading international contemporary and 20th century art galleries will be joined by curated sections showcasing emerging artists, site-specific artist commissions and a talks series. Supported by lead partner...

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