Core to Carmen Herrera’s work is a drive for formal simplicity and a striking sense of colour. Herrera began the sketches and preparations for her Estructuras (Structures) in the late 1960s, around the same time that key Minimalism sculptors including Carl Andre, Donald Judd and Barnett Newman were early in their exploration of the medium. Of the shift from painting to sculpture Herrera has noted: “It became clear to me that the linear elements in my work required a hard surface to integrate structurally the “hard edges”.” These works marked an important moment in Herrera’s career, wherein the forms move from drawing, to painting, to sculpture, and her meticulous sharp edges are physically manifested. Her first major exhibition of outdoor sculptures took place in City Hall Park, New York, NY, organized by Public Art Fund in 2019 and traveled to Buffalo Bayou Park, Houston in 2020.
Carmen Herrera was born in Havana, Cuba in 1915. She moved between France and Cuba throughout the 1930s and 1940s before settling in New York in 1954. Her work is in numerous public and private collections including Museum of Modern Art, NY; Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Hirschhorn Museum, Washington DC; Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington DC; Walker Art Center, MN; Museum of Fine Arts Boston, MA; Crystal Bridges Museum of Art, AR; Tate Collection, London.