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Nancy Cohen: Recent Sculpture
By Kristen Accola, Director of Exhibitions
The Hunterdon Museum of Art 1999


Nancy Cohen is interested in the precarious balances that exist in nature and in the experience of our physical existence. Cohen sculpts biomorphic forms that feel as if they have just completed molting, spinning, bursting or landing.

Metaphors abound in Cohen's careful juxtaposition of opposites-heavy and light, hard and soft, strong and weak.. The work balances the most delicate, vulnerable structures with hearty, almost industrial components. Fragile trajectories extend from heavy voluminous forms. Gravity often appears to be defied. She can make cement look soft and drapey and dense metal look bone brittle. Strength and weakness are deceptively interchanged. Grace and clumsiness interweave in harmony. The seductive, tactile surfaces are made from the most ordinary materials. Bodily beauty, after all lies on the surface of a structure we respond to with repulsion. Cohen's work challenges the viewer to consider where beauty and strength actually lie, and in what form.