Photo of green textile sculpture

Sheila Hicks, Peluca verde, 1960–61, collection of the artist, © Sheila Hicks, photo courtesy Fundación Amparo - Museo Amparo

LACMA Favorites: Sheila Hicks’ Peluca verde

January 16, 2024
Cherith Zanghi, Annual Giving Assistant
Alexander Schneider, Associate Editor

For the series LACMA Favorites, we’re sharing highlights from LACMA’s collections and exhibitions chosen by staff from across the museum. 

American artist Sheila Hicks, known for her sculptural fiber artworks, refined her skills in weaving and deepened her knowledge of pre-Columbian textile arts while traveling extensively in Latin America, particularly in Chile and Mexico, in the late 1950s. These experiences soon contributed to signature works like Peluca verde (1960–61), which is a long rope-like grouping of tied threads in bright shades of green that evokes Andean art forms. Since the piece has a flexible, unfixed composition, it can be displayed in a virtually endless number of arrangements. 

“Something like this is almost like a living object because every single time that it is put on display it’s going to be very different,” says Cherith Zanghi, Annual Giving Assistant. “I’m thinking about how this was picked up by someone and put here and then arranged, and they had to think really hard about how they wanted it to be seen.” Peluca verde, whose title translates to “green wig,” is now on view in Woven Histories: Textiles and Modern Abstraction, which traces how, when, and why abstract art intersected with woven textiles (and pre-loom technologies like basketry, knotting, and netting) over the past century. There, visitors can get an up-close look at the most recent display in the life of this shape-shifting fiber work. 

Woven Histories is on view in BCAM, Level 2, through January 21.