Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

Arturo Herrera (Venezuelan, b. 1959)

Behind the House III, 1999

Wool felt

Four parts, installed: 102 x 296 in. (259.1 x 751.8 cm)

Restricted gift of Nancy and Sandy Koltun.

New York– and Berlin-based artist Arturo Herrera’s practice includes collage, relief, wall painting, photography, and felt wall hangings. Herrera uses abstract forms that suggest recognizable elements yet are also ambiguous enough to elude specific readings or interpretations. Like a psychological Rorschach test, his works ask viewers to make their own associations with the forms. Behind the House III recalls the work of the abstract expressionists in its large scale and gestural, drip-like appearance, yet it is composed of mass-produced industrial bolts. In Herrera’s work, negative space is featured as prominently as solid form and vivid color. The voids torn in the solid mass of felt create a work with strong formal properties—particularly line, shape and color—as well as psychological and social undertones.