Dan Flavin Finds a Corner at the Norton Simon

There can’t be many 2013 museum installations with a crazier back story than one planned for the Norton Simon Museum. It will debut Dan Flavin’s “monument” on the survival of Mrs. Reppin, a 1966 fluorescent corner piece acquired by the pre-NSM Pasadena Museum back in 1969. The Ladd + Kelsey building on Colorado Boulevard was then under construction. The Flavin was never shown in its new home (below)… because the building had no corners.

To L+K, corners were Squaresville and Flatland, unsuited to the mad Möbius strip of tomorrow’s psychedelic-hippie-feminist art. Not until Frank Gehry’s 1999 refresh were the NSM’s galleries squared off, belated acknowledgment that the West Coast’s MoMA had become its Frick (as Robert Irwin put it). One corner will show the Flavin, March 8 to August 19, 2013.