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David Smith referred to his sculptures of the 1950s, like Egyptian Barnyard, as “drawings in space.” Their open construction of lines and forms, here created from wrought and soldered silver, recall the gestural marks of his drawings. Smith’s forms allude to the contours of his natural surroundings. It has been suggested that they also refer to what only the mind’s eye could see—like the tracks of shooting stars, or the flight paths of birds that knife through a landscape.
Smith chose to work far away from cities. Over time, his 80-acre farm at Bolton Landing became the stage for his large-scale sculptures, which integrated completely with their natural surroundings, as can be seen in the image to the right.