press release

The Margulies Collection at the Warehouse, Miami, in collaboration with the Bruce Silverstein Gallery, New York, is pleased to present Brancusi: The Photographs, an exhibition of the artist’s photographic works featuring 29 rare vintage gelatin silver prints from the early 20th century.

“We recognize the rarity of these vintage photographs by one of the greatest artists of the Modern era”, says collector Martin Margulies. “After seeing the works at the Bruce Silverstein Gallery in New York it occurred to us that Brancusi has never been exhibited in Florida before and bringing his photographs to Miami would provide our audience with a rare glimpse into early 20th century abstraction from such a unique and interesting perspective. We are excited to have the Brancusi photographs installed adjacent to the historical sculpture we have in our permanent installations by Miró and Noguchi. Noguchi worked as an apprentice in Brancusi’s studio from 1927-29 and was very influenced by the master’s abstract forms. The exhibition will add an important aspect to our educational mission this season.”

The works included in Brancusi: The Photographs were printed by the artist and come from family, friends and known collectors of his work who received them during the artist’s lifetime. Produced from both photographic negatives as well as 16 mm film stills, these vintage prints include images of his individual sculptures, or at times larger studio views of groupings of his works (termed “groupe mobiles” by the artist) as well as numerous self-portraits, arresting still-lifes and abstract compositions with expressive intent.

The photographs are integral to understanding Brancusi as an artist; they indicate that he was not only fully aware of photography’s power to guide, control, and enhance the viewer’s experience of his inherently three-dimensional sculptures, but also to completely transform them into new two-dimensional works of art. By physically placing and positioning his sculptures within his studio, Brancusi creates complex arrangements that often incorporate radical lighting providing a key to viewing and interpreting his sculptural works. His photographs express a unique pictorial vision that moves decisively beyond mere documentation and firmly establishes Brancusi as one of the most remarkably innovative image-makers in the history of the medium.

This exhibition furthers the critical dialogue surrounding this seminal body of photographic work. Becoming a topic of growing interest, Brancusi’s photographs have been the focus of several recent exhibitions, including The Original Copy, Photography of Sculpture, 1839 to Today, held at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, organized by Roxana Marcoci; Constantin Brancusi & Richard Serra: Resting in Time and Space, shown at the Foundation Beyeler, Switzerland, produced by Oliver Wick; Framing Sculpture: Brancusi, Rosso and Man Ray at the Boijmans Museum, Rotterdam; and Brancusi, Film and Photography, the monumental exhibition of Brancusi’s photographs exhibited at the Centre Pompidou, curated by Quentin Bajac.