May 6 – September 3, 2018 Opening: May 6, 2018 (3 – 6pm)



‘Built’ was a parkwide solo exhibition of newly commissioned works by Virginia Overton that refashioned found materials with dynamism and potency. In succinct and elegant forms, often accompanied with wry humor, Overton addressed concepts of labor, economics, and the land in today’s society. Her material choices – fundamental elements for construction and fabrication – combined with her axiomatic approach to process, evoked narratives of self-reliance, creative constraints, and expediency.

At the Park, Overton created new iterations of ongoing forms in her practice – including altered pick-up trucks, a water feature, a truss gem sculpture, a suspended work, and a billboard, among others. Weaving together these works was their shared role as support structures, both in their original purpose and in their new generative articulations. Wooden beams and trusses were elements that repeated through the exhibition, revealing the materials’ multiple capacities as tools. Situated in the changing, once-industrial waterfront neighborhood of Long Island City, the works shed their former functions without nostalgia. Instead, Overton’s works exhibited the vitality of creative reuse, the ingenuity of traditional forms of vernacular making, and an entwined admiration and wonder towards the physical and material world around us.

An adaption of ‘Built’ opened at Don River Valley Park in Toronto in December 2018. Learn More


Cover of catalogue, 9 1/2 x 11″

Socrates published a catalogue documenting the exhibition and providing new scholarship on Overton’s oeuvre with a focus on her outdoor works. The catalogue includes scholarly essays by Johanna Burton, Keith Haring Director and Curator of Education and Public Engagement at the New Museum; Kari Cwynar, Curator at the Don River Valley Park Art Program; Leah Pires, PhD Candidate, Department of Art History at Columbia University; and Jess Wilcox, Director of Exhibitions at Socrates Sculpture Park. Purchase Catalogue


The publication is made possible by the Henry Luce Foundation.

‘Built’ is organized by Socrates Sculpture Park and curated by Jess Wilcox, Director of Exhibitions. The exhibition is made possible with generous support from Lambent Foundation, Henry Luce Foundation, the Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, White Cube, and Bortolami Gallery, with additional support provided by Spacetime C.C. The exhibition is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.