Valerie Carberry Gallery

José De Rivera: Figures, Models, and Constructions, 1930 – 1980

José De Rivera: Figures, Models, and Constructions, 1930 – 1980

working model no. 4 by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Working Model No. 4, 1955

working model no. 16 by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Working Model No. 16, 1955

working model no. 15 by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Working Model No. 15, 1955

construction 6-52 by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Construction 6-52, 1952

construction 7-1-71 by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Construction 7-1-71, 1971

untitled (red and black) by josé de rivera

José de Rivera

Untitled (Red and Black), 1940

Friday, April 27, 2012Saturday, June 16, 2012


Chicago, IL USA

José De Rivera created some of the most elegant forms in sculpture of the twentieth century over a career that spanned fifty years. The artist is best known for his looping linear constructions in stainless steel and brass, produced from the 1950’s – 1980’s, that were the first to articulate a line in space. Lesser known are his early works: highly stylized and streamlined representations of animals, human figures, and brightly colored metal shell forms that cup and release spatial volume.

While the pieces in this exhibition range stylistically from representational to abstract, they are unified by what De Rivera called the “beauty and source of excitement”’ in sculpture…. “the interdependence and interrelationship of the form.”1 Invited to Yale from 1953 – 1955 to be a visiting sculpture critic, De Rivera sought to show, not merely tell, his students exactly how he arrived at such balance in his work. He devised thirty-four working models to teach three-dimensional perceptual design: orbs, ellipses, loops, cubiform and rectilinear solids, all conceived to be handled, turned, viewed, and experienced on multiple axes. It is our great pleasure to present the collection of working models in this exhibition. Each expresses in small format the full range of artistic balance realized in De Rivera’s work in all sizes and shapes.

1. See Joan M. Marter, José de Rivera: Constructions (Madrid: Taller Ediciones JB, 1980). p. 59.

Valerie Carberry Gallery is open to the public 10-5, Monday through Friday, and 11-5 on Saturday. For additional information regarding the gallery, upcoming exhibitions, or reproductions, please contact Susan Beagley, 312-397-9990.