Directed by Chris Teerink • Documentary • 2012 • 72 minutes
'Conceptual artists leap to conclusions logic cannot reach,' Sol LeWitt (1928-2007) said in a rare audio-interview from 1974. Notoriously camera-shy, Lewitt refused awards and rarely granted interviews, yet in Chris Teerink's sensitive cinematic portrait, the pioneering conceptual American artist comes alive.
LeWitt's artwork can be seen as obsession pushed to the limit of paradox and absurdity: simple ideas, communicated simply-often with a set of instructions sent by fax-lead to overwhelming visual and intellectual complexity. For example, to create Wall drawing #801: Spiral, a white line spirals down the black wall of a cupola 3.2 miles long. The film documents the piece's 2011 installation in Maastricht, the Netherlands, which takes eight assistants 30 days to complete. When the painstaking work is done and the scaffolding taken away, the result is the transformative.
Using extensive interviews and documentation of artwork installed around the world, in the acclaimed documentary Sol LeWitt, director Chris Teerink explores the artist's work and philosophy.
'Eye-catching and informative... Both an accessible introduction and a piece of advanced criticism. 'Sol LeWitt' will help you understand the art it depicts and allow you to appreciate those aspects of it that surpass understanding.' -A.O. Scott, The New York Times