Mara Tapp: And she [Lee Bontecou, sculptor] is also a very generous artist. She says, ‘Think whatever you want about my piece.’

Elizabeth Smith, curator: She doesn’t want to impose. She’s probably most closely allied to the abstract expressionists because she acknowledges when she was a young artist [during] the heyday of the abstract expressionists, she admired not only their work but the idea of freedom and experimentation that their work embodied and the way they lived their lives. They weren’t theorists. They didn’t talk about their work. It was intuitive. She still doesn’t want to really talk about her work. She doesn’t want to fix meaning. She wants to keep it open for people.


Mara Tapp: Do people ever ask you, ‘What does this mean?’ What do you say?

Lee Bontecou I don’t answer at all. It’s what you see in it. What I see in it is something else. I don’t get caught up in that.


Mara Tapp: What do you want them to take away?

Lee Bontecou: Their own thoughts, I guess, and their own feelings about it. Out in LA they were seeing something in themselves and they thanked me for maybe helping them to see something. It was the best. Not ‘How did you do this?’ or ‘How did you do that?’ but just something they had gleaned from themselves. Everybody has a different take on everything. I’ve had people come and say, ‘I didn’t see that as foreboding. I saw it as something really funny.’ That was their view. Something inside their life–I don’t know what it was, but it was good.

You don’t have to use the same medium to share the same philosophy.

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snippets of an interview found here

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Tickled to be making a guest appearance here today.