Against the Day by Richard Deutsch

On view Sept. 19

Richard Deutsch, Against the Day, 2007, granite, The Kreeger Museum. Photo by Colin Winterbottom.

The Kreeger Museum is pleased to present Against the Day, 2007, a recently acquired work by California sculptor Richard Deutsch that occupies the North Lawn of the Museum. A gift from the Chevy Chase Land Company of Montgomery County, Maryland, Against the Day comprises eight distinct sculptures: five white granite “benches” surround a central row of three geometric forms in white, red, and black granite.

The sight lines of Against the Day are intended to draw viewers to the northern edge of the Sculpture Garden, which offers long views of the Museum building and nearby contemporary sculpture. The work’s abstract elements belie a humanistic subject: according to Deutsch, the circular white form, with its keyhole-like window, symbolizes curiosity; peering through it directs the eye first toward the red sculpture, an abstracted representation of the human heart, and then to the large black monolith, which symbolizes strength and wisdom.

Deutsch is particularly interested in the way that viewers physically experience and move around sculpture, which he refers to as the “drama around objects.” He describes Against the Day as “huggable,” and Museum visitors are encouraged to sit on the benches and physically interact with the sculptures. “It is how the viewer sees them, their perspective, how they move through the space, and how the relationships change that are the guiding factors to the composition,” says Deutsch.