Pleasures and Possible Celebrations: Rosemary Mayer's Temporary Monuments 1977-1981

May 2 - June 27, 2021
Gordon Robichaux, NYC 

To give me a hold, make me a place, in time and seasons, mark them this way and think of the other, older ways people marked years and seasons, of circling ghosts around days with religious ceremonies, birthdays, new clothes for different seasons.

(Poster for Spell, 1977)

Installed across both spaces at Gordon Robichaux, this exhibition features a selection of drawings and documentation related to ephemeral installations and unrealized projects with balloons from the late 1970s including Spell, Some Days in April, and Connections, part of a body of work she called “Temporary Monuments.” This is the first occasion the work will be on display since it was originally exhibited in the late 1970s and early ’80s. Two related sculptures will also be on view. Scarecrow (model) for a field, made with fabric, wood, and ribbons, is a proposal for an unrealized Temporary Monument and the only extant sculpture from this period. 17th Street Ghost is a site-responsive presentation of one of Mayer’s ephemeral “Ghosts” sculptures, conceived for this exhibition by the Estate of Rosemary Mayer.

Full Press Release

Rosemary Mayer, Scarecrow (model) for a field, 1978-79, Detail

Rosemary Mayer, 17th Street Ghost, 1981/2021, Created by The Estate of Rosemary Mayer with Amanda Friedman, glassine, cellophane, plastic, wood, paint, ribbons, cord, and linen thread, 81 x 105 x 84 in

Rosemary Mayer, 17th Street Ghost, 1981/2021, Detail

Photos: Greg Carideo

Related Event: 

Drawing Session - 17th Street Ghost

On Saturday, June 26, 12-6 pm we invite you to sit and draw 17th Street Ghost. We'll book hourly time slots, please email to confirm a time.

Rosemary Mayer's drawing practice often involved preliminary drawings for planning her sculptures as well as drawings that documented the finished work.

Inspired by her process—and also the collaborative spirit of many of her projects—we invite you to draw 17th Street Ghost, a new, site-responsive sculpture created by the Estate of Rosemary Mayer for the exhibition at Gordon Robichaux.

Bring colored pencils and paper. Some pencils will be available for loan from Rosemary Mayer's archive.