"Owing to constraints of space, the work for which the Venezuelan artist Jesús Soto is best known today – the walk-through ‘Penetrables’ installations that reach as far back as the late 1960s – did not feature in the Grey Art Gallery’s exhibition ‘Soto: Paris and Beyond, 1950–1970’, which was curated by Estrellita B. Brodsky, an authority on the artist. But this absence need not be deplored since this seductive body of work, responding as it does to the growing demand for immersive environments and audience participation of a hands-on variety, would inevitably have distracted from the artist’s earlier, more understated achievements."
The first large-scale exhibition dedicated to Jesús Soto to be held at a New York museum in more than 35 years, Soto: Paris and Beyond, 1950–1970 will be on view at New York University’s Grey Art Gallery from January 10 through March 31, 2012. Curated by Estrellita B. Brodsky and comprising a focused selection of approximately 50 works, the exhibition highlights this major Venezuelan artist’s early career, after he moved from Caracas to Paris in 1950. Soto: Paris and Beyond offers a rare opportunity to trace Soto’s visionary trajectory as well as his reciprocal influence and exchange with other members of the avant-garde.
"Estrellita Brodsky did the research for this exceptionally powerful, yet paradoxically intimate exhibition. In a catalogue essay by Sarah K. Rich, titled “Soto and You,” she refers to Soto’s work as a “pedagogical model of self-awareness.” On another level, her secular thesis may be the counterpart of Buber’s “dialogical encounter” as Soto’s work becomes the place and time of transmission between human beings—an activist encounter between the perceivers in which each may feel the impact as a kind of heightened and rarified encounter."