Rosemarie Castoro (1939–2015), Flasher, 1979; galvanized steel and black epoxy, 96 x 48 x 36 inches; Bequest of Annette M. Cravens
In 1979, Rosemarie Castoro installed “24 Flashers” made of “choreographic wrestled steel” on the theatre plaza at Artpark in Lewiston, New York. David Katzive, who was visual arts director, said they hoped the work would merge the visual and performing arts, for which Artpark was renowned. Visitors could stand inside of them, thereby making the sculptures interactive rather than a static backdrop.
Although associated with New York Minimalists, Rosemarie Castoro also considered herself to be a Futurist—like the early 20th-century Italian artists whose works created a visual language for movement, light, and speed. While earning her B.F.A. at Pratt Institute, she was inspired by dance and choreography, enjoying that momentary suspension in space when she “leapt through the air and continued to remain up there…” She told Lucy Lippard in ARTFORUM (1975): “I felt a self-propelled air-stretch. It was a way to leave this earth, to bring coherence to reality, to find a path again, to deepen the grooves and push the forest of the half blind.” She worked primarily in painting and drawing until the late 1960s, when she made a series of thin aluminum sculptures. In the early ‘70s, her Free-Standing Walls transitioned her paintings into the third dimension.—NW