About this artwork
Eva Hesse produced an extraordinarily original, influential body of work in her short career, pioneering the use of eccentric materials and idiosyncratic sculptural forms. Hesse considered Hang Up among her most important works because it was the first to achieve the level of “absurdity or extreme feeling” she intended. Produced at the height of Minimalism and the Pop Art movement but belonging to neither, the piece was fabricated by her friend the artist Sol LeWitt, and her husband, Tom Doyle, who wrapped the wood stretcher with bed sheets and attached the cord-covered steel tubing. Sealed with acrylic, the object is subtly shaded from pale to dark ash gray. It is an ironic sculpture about painting, privileging the medium’s marginal features: the frame and its hanging device, represented by the cord that protrudes awkwardly into the gallery. The title might be understood as a humorous instruction for the sculpture’s display but also acts on a more psychological level. Collapsing the space between the viewer and the artwork, Hang Up creates a sense of disorientation and toys with our ability to discern a clear demarcation between painting and sculpture.
- Eva Hesse
- Hang Up
- United States
- Acrylic on cloth over wood; acrylic on cord over steel tube
- 182.9 × 213.4 × 198.1 cm (72 × 84 × 78 in.)
- Through prior gifts of Arthur Keating and Mr. and Mrs. Edward Morris
- © The Estate of Eva Hesse, Courtesy Hauser & Wirth.