A childhood immigrant to the United States from Russia, Louise Nevelson studied painting before coming to prominence as a sculptor in the late 1950s.

Gathering found objects from the urban environment around her studio in New York, she presented them within boxes.

Each served as a composition in isolation, but Nevelson began to accumulate boxes on a grand scale in assemblages that she called ‘walls’.

Black Wall 1959 is one of the earliest of the large-scale works that Nevelson exhibited and constitutes an alternative portrait of the affluent consumer-driven New York City.