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Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991

Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991. Image courtesy of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery Digital Assets Collection and Archives, Buffalo, New York.

Throwback Thursday: Installing Richard Serra's Kitty Hawk

December 14, 2017

On December, 17, 1991, art preparators finished installing Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983. The work remained on view at the top of the staircase connecting the museum’s 1905 and 1962 Buildings for more than six years.  

Art preparators moving Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, into the museum, December 1991

Art preparators moving Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, into the museum, December 1991. Image courtesy of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery Digital Assets Collection and Archives, Buffalo, New York.

Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991

Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991. Image courtesy of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery Digital Assets Collection and Archives, Buffalo, New York.

Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991

Installation of Richard Serra’s Kitty Hawk, 1983, December 1991. Image courtesy of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery Digital Assets Collection and Archives, Buffalo, New York.

Named after the city in North Carolina where brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright staged the first successful airplane flight, Serra’s sculpture likewise seems to challenge the laws of gravity. The two slabs of Cor-Ten steel that make up the work have a combined weight of more than five tons, yet the top form seems to float in the air, making the arrangement of these elements seem all the more dramatic and precarious.

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