Artist of the Moment: Teresita Fernández

The conceptual artist known for her gorgeous, experiential, large-scale works is undergoing a golden age.

Soon after Teresita Fernández’s sprawling exhibit at MASS MoCA closes, on April 5, the Miami-born, Brooklyn-based artist will head to Manhattan to install Madison Square Park’s biggest public commission yet. Titled Fata Morgana in reference to the rare meteorological mirage, Fernández’s giant golden canopy will hover over the almost seven-acre park for nine months starting April 30 and is intended to be as striking for those looking down from the surrounding skyscrapers as for people passing beneath it. Her next solo show, opening in the fall at Lehmann Maupin in Manhattan, stems from her collaboration with a 12th-generation Nishijin-style weaver, whose Kyoto-based family business dates back to 1688. In evidence throughout many of Fernández’s enveloping installations is her fascination with gold. “It’s a perfect metaphor: mined from underground but used to represent light,” she explains. “It’s a rich material completely wrapped up in ideas of power, possession, place and value as well as spirituality.”

MASS MoCA at 87 Marshall St., North Adams, MA; Lehmann Maupin at 536 W. 22nd St.