Sam Noto works with an attitude of persistent curiosity. His way of working allows his materials to generate form, and explores conceptual ideas about that form dynamically occupying space. Questions of balance are central to many of them. Noto's spirit of invention links him to predecessors like David Smith, but with his own unique sense of improvisation. In much the same way that modernist abstraction was related to jazz in its early days, Noto works through a variety of solutions to problems of form and meaning within a creative framework. That framework has, over the years, progressed in a clear trajectory of style and materials. Yet, the improvisational remains at the heart of what he does, allowing, as he says, "the materials at hand to speak, to suggest the form, and to direct the development of the concept." His most recent work takes on a bold and physically challenging scale, creating pieces of welded steel that are often literally dangerous as well as formally intriguing.