Art of the Lega
One section of animal figures ranges from chunky lizards (above) to a four-footed creature with a masklike head. The works are arranged in fanlike arrays of cases projecting from the wall, like spokes that make the viewer the hub of the creatures' collective gaze.
In the final part of the show, the exhibit's turquoise walls darken to deep blue, and the viewer enters a dim room with a grid of twelve dramatically lit cases. One additional case to the side displays an exquisite eyeless white mask rendered in abstract curves. A placard explains that the test to reach the highest Lega level is simply to contemplate a display of artworks.
I sat on a nearby bench and watched visitors slowly wander through the labyrinth of cases, drawing their own conclusions.
Art of the Lega continues through Sunday, January 16.
[Originally published in December, 2004.]