Sean Scully: Human
A monograph dedicated to the great Irish-American artist and to Human, his new exhibition project for San Giorgio Maggiore Abbey in Venice.
“My work is an attempt to release the spirit”
Published on the occasion of the exhibition in the historic church of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice, the volume gathers recent works and new, unseen pieces by the celebrated abstract artist who has created a series of new sculptures, paintings, drawings, and watercolour works directly inspired by the monks’ Abbey of San Giorgio Maggiore, by their vast illuminated manuscript collections and by the 16th-century Benedictine church. Works instantly recognisable by Scully’s visual vocabulary of horizontal and vertical stripes, which reflects fifty years of constant refining.
The fulcrum of the catalogue is the new and impressive Opulent Ascension, a site-specific sculpture over ten meters high, constructed from stacked frames, each wrapped in rich and varying colours of felt: the different colours visually suggest the steps of a monumental, ascending ladder leading the eye and spirit heavenwards and revealing the genius of the artist, always able to surprise us with new stylistic formulas and symbolic references. A soaring, charismatic work that catalyses the observer, leading him to the fulcrum of the artist’s creative idea and which embodies Scully’s conviction that his work can serve as a conduit between the physical world we can see and a transcendent one to which the soul aspires.
Javier Molins holds a doctorate in fine arts from the Polytechnic University of Valencia and a degree in journalism from the Autonomous University of Barcelona. He has directed the Marlborough Gallery in Madrid and been Director of Communications and Development at IVAM. Author and curator, he currently works as an art critic for the ABC newspaper and the magazine Cambio 16, and as a consultant to foundations and collectors.