Karma is pleased to present The Miracle of Burano, the first Los Angeles solo exhibition of sculptor Arthur Simms. On view from March 11th to April 29th, 2023, the exhibition brings together works from the 1990s through the present, many of which have never before been exhibited.
Exhibition views of Arthur Simms, The Miracle of Burano, Karma Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Arthur Simms has created a multivalent body of work over the course of his decades-
Chester, Alice, Marcia, Erica And Arthur Take A Ride (1993), the earliest work included in the exhibition, resembles a sailing vessel consisting of a weblike layer of knotted rope stretched over a wood mast. The work recalls the 1969 journey of Arthur and his three sisters, accompanied by their father, whose names comprise its title. The family traveled from Jamaica to Brooklyn where they reunited with their mother who had moved to the United States three years prior. The push-
In mobile works such as Carnival (2005) and Red Cooper (2004), Simms repurposes skateboards, roller skates, and cars, recalling the moveable sculptures of Constantin Brâncuși. These works appear as if they are resting mid-
Exhibition 11 March -
Simms works in both large and small scales but, by his own insistence, always at a human scale, honoring the “act that it is made by my hands.”He also pays homage to the work of loved ones: when Simms was a fellow at the Academy of Rome in 2002, he began a collaboration with the writer Peter Orner. Initially, Simms used texts written by Orner as a sculptural impetus. In turn, Orner began to compose his texts directly on Simms’materials, such as a trumpet inscribed with his writings, now a part of Trumpet and a Rocking Chair (2019). Simms’ sculptures venerate the living as well as those who have passed, as in A Citrus Branch for David Fisch (2003), in memory of an artist and friend who died of AIDS in 1993.
A devotional sculptor, Simms preserves the past lives of his materials as well as the memories of those dear to him. Found objects are recontextualized through their associative connections to one another. Simms transforms humble materials, revealing the innumerable routes that traverse through them.
Arthur Simms (b. 1961, Saint Andrew, Jamaica) is an artist based in Staten Island, New York. His work was featured in the Kingston Biennial in 2022, the Venice Biennale in 2019, and the inaugural Jamaica Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 2001. Simms had a solo exhibition at Martos Gallery in New York in 2021. In 2018, he mounted a site-
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