Down to Earth: Modern Artists and the Land, Before Land Art

Ahmanson Building, Level 2
August 17, 2013–December 8, 2013

Down to Earth presents a selection of works, primarily from LACMA’s permanent collection, in which figural and terrestrial forms seem to merge, exploring the connection between humans and the earth (dirt, rocks, mountains, and terrain in general) as it is expressed in works of art from the early and mid-20th century.

Beginning with Auguste Rodin, whose sculpture The Earth depicts a recumbent body struggling to free itself from primordial mud and evokes the biblical narrative of human creation, the installation also includes works by Henry Moore and Jean Dubuffet, who “breathed life” into geologic forms and other earthy matter. Photographers Edward Weston and William Garnett bring to light curvilinear aspects of the landscape that evoke the nude body, while Lee Mullican offers surrealist visions of earth incarnate. 

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