Jackie Ferrara

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Jackie Ferrara (born November 17, 1929, in Detroit, Michigan) is an American sculptor and draughtswoman best known for her pyramidal stacked structures. Her work is in the collection of the MOMA, the LACMA, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, and the Phillips Collection, among others.[1]

Coming from a background with no formal art education, Ferrara moved to New York in 1952 and became involved in its burgeoning art scene, as well as theatre and dance through a stint working for the Henry Street Playhouse. In the sixties she was involved with performances and happenings at the Judson Church, performing in two of Claes Oldenburg's happenings, which she was particularly influenced by. During this time she began sculpting, developing a unique style by the seventies. Characteristics of her work include wooden pyramid or ziggurat structures with accompanying horizontally stacked steps, "meticulous craftmanship, [...] reference to generic types of non-Western building, such as those of Mesoamerica and Egypt, and to geometric form." [2]

One of her earliest mature works was 1974's Hollow Core Pyramid.[2] Other well known works of the period include Curved Pyramid and Stacked Pyramid (both 1973). Large scale public works Ferrara has created include Castle Clinton: Tower and Bridge (1979) and Meeting Place (1989), which featured a large 'lobby' with concrete and steel flooring, a raised platform with steps and concrete and steel seating. Other public art projects include the 250 seat "Amphitheater" (1999) at LACMA, 60 foot high "Stepped Tower" (2000) at University of Minnesota, 60 foot long red and black granite "Fountain" (2006) at University of Houston.


  1. ^ Johnson, Cecile. "Ferrara, Jackie." In Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online, (accessed February 10, 2012; subscription required).
  2. ^ a b Turner, Jane, ed. (1996) The Dictionary of Art. London: Macmillan Publishers Limited. p. 8.

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