From Marcel Duchamp to British Punk: Ron Arad’s Early Work at Friedman Benda, New York

Friedman Benda presents Ron Arad‘s “Fishes & Crows, ’85-’94” at its New York venue, June 21-July 27. It’s the gallery’s first solo exhibition of Arad’s work since “Guarded Thoughts” in 2008.

The show explores the development of Arad’s early work, showing how it changed over the years  between 1985 and 1994.  

“For Arad, this decade was marked by constant experimentation, motivated by a profound questioning of the status quo,” the gallery says. “This excavation of new possibilities culminated in the some of the most iconic works of late twentieth-century design. In 1981, Arad founded his Covent Garden studio ‘One Off,’ which quickly became legendary for its look and energy, equal parts construction and deconstruction. and extraordinary energy. His first works there were Duchampian experiments, made with found industrial fittings like Kee Klamps and discarded Rover seats. These paved the way toward more freely sculpted explorations in welded sheet steel: collisions of raw materials, industrial methods, and complex abstraction that immediately suggested a connection to the British punk scene and cemented his underground status.”

During the ’80s, the artist went in a different direction, working on more precise and polished forms. “The Cone” series “was a key initial step in this direction even though the artist was still somewhat rough and ready in their execution, the pieces have a geometrical clarity that was new to his practice,” the gallery says. “It was this impulse that was tremendously satisfying resolution in his Big Easy furniture, cleanly articulated compositions of shaped planes and hard seams.”

 Ron Arad was born in Tel Aviv in 1951. He has exhibited at many major museums and galleries throughout the world, and his work is considered definitive within public collections of Contemporary design, including those at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Metropolitan Museum of Art, N.Y; Victoria & Albert Museum, London and the Vitra Design Museum, among many others. 


The exhibition will be on view from June 21 through July 27, 2018 at Friedman Benda, 515 W 26th Street New York, NY 10001.

For details, visit:  

Click on the slideshow for a sneak peek at the exhibition.

Founder: Louise Blouin



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