Six Pointed Star

Louise Nevelson (American, 1899 – 1988)
Molded paper
Frame : 42 1/2 x 36 1/4 in. (1.1 m x 92.07 cm)
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Gift of Richard '52 and Margaret '52 Kruizenga
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Known as the Star of David, the six-pointed star composed of two overlapping triangles has been a symbol of Jewish identity since ancient times. This image of a deconstructed six-pointed star seemingly reflects Louise Nevelson's ambivalent relationship with her own Jewish heritage. Nevelson was born to an Orthodox Jewish family in the Ukraine and moved to the United States when she was six years old. In 1920, she married Charles Nevelson, a wealthy Jewish businessman whose family had emigrated to New York from Latvia and the couple soon had a son, Myron. Louise felt confined by the opportunities that were open to her in her roles as wife and mother in their tight-knit Jewish community, and in 1932 she left Charles to pursue a career as an artist. Although Nevelson referenced Judaism and the Holocaust in a number of artworks throughout her career, her art was typically more informed by the modernist impulses toward formal and material experimentation. She made this work by casting paper pulp in a mold to created a three-dimensional printed image.    

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