Walter De Maria’s The Lightning Field
(1977) in New Mexico, Donald Judd’s Marfa in Texas, and the Boros Collection in a Second World War bunker in the middle of Berlin are instances where the specific characteristics of the place and the emphasis on personal encounters with art make unique experiences possible.
In almost all of these cases, art is made especially for the site. Art is often connected to the city and urban life, but at Wanås Konst it exists under the same uncompromising conditions that we see in nature. Maya Lin’s Eleven Minute Line
, 2004, is a long, winding earth mound formed in a cow pasture and Ann Hamilton's installation lignum
, 2002, takes up a storehouse and in it creates a whole new world to enter into. Art has also crept into nature, like Jenny Holzer’s hidden, elusive, and unbearable words in Wanås Wall
, 2002. Here art does not sidestep the symbolism of the place. Ann-Sofi Sidén’s Fideicommissum
, 2000, is a bronze sculpture of a crouching woman urinating behind a bush—art marking its territory and pointing out earlier patriarchal structures. Fideicommissum, the legal institution of the entail, was historically used to ensure that estates and property were passed as trusts, typically benefitting the oldest son. Works by women dominate the permanent collection and prove that there is no shortage of women amongst the foremost artists. American artist are well represented and in many cases the collection holds works that are unique in scale for a collection open to the public, both in Europe and in the USA.
The seasons mark every visit to the park at Wanås. Robert Wilson’s installation A House for Edwin Denby
, 2000— with warm light and the artist’s droning voice streaming out of the windows – is magical set in the beech wood ablaze with fall colors and Yoko Ono’s Wish Trees for Wanås
, 2011, bear both apple blossoms and wishes in May. To explore the permanent collection