June Kelly Gallery

Rebecca Welz

Sunstalks and Barnacles, an exhibition of welded steel sculptures by Rebecca Welz — provocative rhythmic explorations that reflect her captivation with line and movement as continuum in space — will open at the June Kelly Gallery, 166 Mercer Street, on November 17. The exhibition will remain on view through December 19.

“As I make sculpture with my torches and tools,” says Welz, “I look to find the poetry and rhythms that give glimpses into the world of nature but also beyond, into the concrete and also the spiritual.  I work to transform round steel rod, hard and machine rolled, into something that is soft and fluid and looks like it is moving and still growing.”

Welz speaks of her sculptures as line drawings in three dimensions that describe and define space, the lines energetically entwining around and through each other.  “They have a sense of time and suggest to the viewer they have been around for a long time on this blue planet.”

Welz’s intriguingly innovative approach of twisting, bending and welding rods of steel challenge the limitations of her material while simultaneously highlighting the fragility of many natural forms.  The whimsy of fantasy is seen in the lyrical free-standing, Sunstalks with Copper, 2017 and the wall installation of labyrinths including Angler Barnacle, 2017.

Welz’s sculptural language of gestural lines shaped to the slenderest proportions reflects mesmerizing nuances of her material and imagination. In this exhibition, Welz represents her pieces in convincing illusion of real space, encouraging the viewer to physically interact with them, an idea that was radical until Giacometti’s Surrealist sculpture of the 1930s.

Welz’s investigation of physical space, weightlessness and pictorial elements of the form, conveys the sense of naturalness to her creative process, perhaps, similar to that of the writer, wherein the various parts develop, one from another, rather than sticking rigidly to a preconceived plan.

“I have seen many wonders, and they are humbling; majestic sequoias in California that can live to be 3,500 years old; a row of eagle rays in the Caribbean synchronizing their fins, each one having a different but similar green brocade like pattern; a full grown green turtle padding onto the beach in Mexico.”

Perhaps, to that contemplation, could be added, Welz’s sculptures, organic in that they have the characteristics of a living system consisting of smoothly running interacting parts imitative of being shaped by the processes of Darwinian evolution.

Rebecca Welz, a native of Sausalito, California, lives and works in New York City. She received a bachelor’s degree from Empire State College of the City University of New York, and also studied at the Boston Museum School of Fine Art. Welz’s work has been shown in numerous one-person and group exhibitions. She is represented in many corporate and private collections, including Goldman Sachs; Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton; Credit Lyonnais, Prudential Life Insurance Corporation, AXA Corporation, Pfizer Incorporated, and Warburg Pincus, all of New York.


Born Sausalito, California
Lives and works in New York City

Boston Museum School of Fine Art, Boston, Massachusetts
BA, Empire State College, City University of New York

Solo Exhibitions
2017 Sunstalks and Barnacles: Sculpture, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2014 Smoke Trees and Jellyfish: Sculpture and Collages, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2010 Steel Nets: Sculpture, June Kelly Gallery, New York
Rebecca Welz, Sculpture, Humanities Gallery, Long Island University, Brooklyn, NY
2008 Inner and Outer Spaces: Sculpture, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2005 Steel Kites: Painted Steel Sculpture, June Kelly Gallery, New York; catalogue
2004 Rebecca Welz: Wishing Poles and Other Incarnations, Gallery 555, Oakland Museum of
  California at City Center, CA
2003 Shingle Pieces, Wishing Poles and Floating Arcs, Butters Gallery, Portland, OR
2002 Arcs, Orbs and Other Flying Objects: Sculpture, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2001 Constructions, Butters Gallery Ltd., Portland, OR
2000 Constructions, June Kelly Gallery, New York; catalogue
1997 Constructions, June Kelly Gallery, New York
1994 New Work, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York
1991 Constructions, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York; catalogue
1989 Constructions, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York
1985 Constructions, Bernice Steinbaum Gallery, New York
1979 Landmark Gallery, New York

Selected Group Exhibitions
2016 The New Memesis, SciArt Center, Easton, PA
Sally’s Party, Cherrystone Gallery, Wellfleet, MA
2015 Design is Everything, Schafler Gallery, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
Crossing the Line: Drawings, Paintings and Sculpture, Mark Alsterlind, Norman Lewis, Elie
  Nadelman, Sky Pape, Rebecca Welz and Nola Zirin
, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2014 Line, Butters Gallery, Portland, OR
2013 Unsteady Ground, City Without Walls, Newark, NJ
Sculpture Garden, Butters Gallery, Portland, OR
2008 To Infinity and Beyond: Mathematics in Contemporary Art, co-curated by Elizabeth Meryman
  and Lynn Gamwell, Heckscher Museum of Art, Huntington, NY
2006 The Shape of Things, Butters Gallery, Portland, CA
2005 Vernissage, Sculpturesite Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2003 Uncommon Threads, curated by Kathleen Spicer, Delaware Valley Arts Center Loft Gallery,
 Narrowsburg, NY
2001 Collections Installed: Ten Women Who Make Sculpture, curated by Judith K. Brodsky, Mason
  Gross School of the Arts Galleries, Rutgers Center for Innovation Print and Paper, New
Collage, Butters Gallery, Portland, Oregon
1998 Small Works, PSD-X Gallery, New York
Faculty Group Show, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
1996 Akim Masks, Invitational, Sotheby’s, New York; catalogue
1995 Selections, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York
Faculty Group Show, Pratt Institute Manhattan Gallery and The Schafler Gallery, Brooklyn,
Collaborative Work for Grace Borgenicht, Borgenicht Gallery, New York
 Group Show at Office Environments, organized by Joyce Creiger Gallery, Boston, MA;
1993 Hand Workshop, Virginia Center for the Craft Arts, Richmond, VA
Rockville Arts Place, Rockville, MD
1992 Benefit for the Organization of Independent Artists, Rosa Esman Gallery, New York
Process as Issue, College of New Rochelle, NY
1989 Climate‘89, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York; catalogue
Plane Into Form, World Trade Center, New York
1987 Invitational, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York; catalogue
1983 Put Together Again, 4 Sculptors, 22 Wooster Gallery, New York
1982 Polychrome Sculpture: Views by Women Artists, Lever House, New York; catalogue
Put Together, 4 Sculptors, 22 Wooster Gallery, New York
10th Anniversary Show, Landmark Gallery, New York
1976 Auction 393, 393 West Broadway, New York; catalogue
1973 Boston City Hall, Boston, MA

Selected Bibliography
Articles and Reviews
2011 McClermont, Doug, review, ARTnews
2006 Little, Carl, “Rebecca Welz at June Kelly,” review, Art in America, January
2005 Wright, Jeffrey Cyphers, review, Hung Steel, Offoffoff.com
2004 Goodman, Jonathan, review, Sculpture Magazine, March
2003 Morgan, Robert, review, ARTnews, January
2001 Ellertson, Karen, “A sense of place infuses the work of two artists,” The Oregonian, Friday,
  July 20
1997 Bell, J. Bowyer, “Constructions,” Review, September 15
Youens, Rachel, “Curving Space Frees Her Form,” Cover, Vol.11, No.4
1994 Nunn, Emily, review, The New Yorker, July 11
1991 Wright, Jeff, review, Cover, September
1989 Wright, Jeff, review, Cover, May
1985 Moss, Jacqueline, article, Arts Magazine, September
1983 Wolff, Theodore F., “The Many Masks of Modern Art Series,” The Christian Science Monitor,
  October 27
Morris, Diana, review, Women Artists News, summer, pp. 8 and 9
1982 Wolff, Theodore F., “Series on Art,” The Christian Science Monitor, February 10, p.18
1979 Erlich, Robbie, review, Arts Magazine, September, p.34
Kingsley, April, “Nature Takes It’s Course,” The Village Voice, April 2, p. 79
Wolff, Theodore F., review, The Christian Science Monitor, March 9, p. 15

Selected Bibliography
Books and Catalogues
2005 Steel Kites, essay by Jonathan Goodman, June Kelly Gallery, New York
2000 Constructions, essay by Gerrit Henry, June Kelly Gallery, New York
1997 Wolff, Theodore F., exhibition essay, June Kelly Gallery, New York; brochure
1994 Doering, Erika, Switzky, Rachel, Welz, Rebecca, Goddess in the details: product design by
, publishers: Association of Women Industrial Designs, New York, book
1991 Constructions, essay by Theodore F. Wolff, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, New York

Selected Public Collections
AXA Corporation, New York
Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton, New York
Cortec Corporation, New York
Credit Lyonnais, New York
Goldman Sachs & Company, New York
Merck, New Jersey
Mound, Cotton, Wollan, New York
Pfizer Incorporated, New York
Prudential Life Insurance Corporation, New York
Sabre Corporation, Dallas/Fort Worth, TX
Sidney Lewis, Richmond, VA
Warburg Pincus, New York
William Kaufman Organization, New York
Windmueller Fine Arts, Scarsdale, New York

2013 Social Entrepreneurship: Cultural Exchange, Prototype Development and Fabrication
The Malinalco Project, organized by Pratt professor Rebecca Welz and Ellen Calmus of
  The Corner Project of Malinalco, aims to contribute to the vitality of the area by creating
  revenue through their products. Twelve designers from the graduate program at Pratt
  traveled to central Mexico to work with weavers, local woodcarvers, and carpenters to
  make a product line representing the local traditions and skills that combines the
  expertise of designers from New York.
2010 The Guyana Project, organized by Pratt professor Rebecca Welz and Patty Johnson of
  North South Project, aims at developing partnership with the artisan workers, creating an
  exchange rather than a traditional model of manufacturing used by industrial nations.
2001-2003 Smart Design and OXO; and Coalition for the Homeless; directed research for Industrial
  Design Graduate Students
1990 Founded The Association of Women Industrial Designers, AWID, in conjunction with a
  group of graduate students. Mounted the first exhibition of women product design in the
  United States, funded by Timex group USA, Inc., Middlebury, CT., Knoll Manufacturing
  Company, East Granville, PA, New York, Pratt Manhattan Gallery and the Pratt Schaffler
  Gallery, Brooklyn, NY

 Back to Rebecca WelzRebecca Welz Bio

June Kelly Gallery Home Page

Upcoming Shows

Current Show

Gallery Artists

News Briefs

166 MERCER STREET, NEW YORK, NY 10012/212-226-1660
(Between Houston and Prince Streets)
Gallery Hours: Tuesday  through Saturday, 11 am to 6 pm

About the June Kelly GalleryWe are an ADAA Member