Syracuse University

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Sol LeWitt

Among the most prolific and influential figures in contemporary art.

The School of Art and Design in Syracuse University’s College of Visual and Performing Arts has a tradition of excellence that goes back more than 130 years. In fact, Syracuse University was the first university in the country to grant a bachelor of fine arts (B.F.A.) degree. Many notable artists name Syracuse University as their alma mater, including Warren Kimble ’57, Sol LeWitt ’49, Roger Shimomura G’69, and Bill Viola ’73, H’95.

With a career spanning more than four decades and working in a variety of media, including sculpture, painting, drawing, books, and prints, LeWitt was among the most prolific and influential figures in contemporary art. A key creator of minimalism, and later, conceptual art, LeWitt was called “the lodestar of modern American art” by The New York Times.

In the last decades of his life, LeWitt worked with structures, particularly blocks of concrete. Six Curved Walls, installed on the Syracuse University campus, spans 140 feet on the hillside of Crouse College. The sculpture consists of six undulating walls, each 12 feet high, constructed of concrete block. LeWitt often used the material because of its pervasive presence and the relative ease with which it can be arranged in myriad geometric forms and shapes. The sculpture was designed and constructed to mark the inauguration of Nancy Cantor as the 11th Chancellor of Syracuse University in 2004.