New York-based sculptor Arlene Shechet is known for glazed ceramic sculptures that are off-kilter yet hang in a balance between stable and unstable, teetering between the restraint of intellect and the insistence of instinct. Her sculptures encourage circumambulation, often drawing upon Buddhist iconography for inspiration. From Here On Now at the Phillips is both a poetic beckoning and a description of the literal. The exhibition’s title also tweaks the familiar phrase “from here on out” to bring attention to the present and as a reminder that the future is an abstraction.
For this installation, Shechet’s sculptures in ceramic, porcelain, and paper are exhibited across five galleries on two different floors of the museum, extending from the original house to the annex. It includes six recently conserved paintings by Forrest Bess, received as a gift from Miriam Schapiro Grosof in 2014, and on view at the Phillips for the first time.