Tag Archive | Minimalism

Modern Art Monday Presents: The Absolutely Naked Fragrance By John McCracken

Pink Plank McCracken
The Absolutely Naked Fragrance, 1967, Plywood Covered with Fiberglass and Resin By John McCracken (All Photos By Gail)

John McCracken (American, 1934–2011) began producing his vibrant monochrome Planks in 1966. While the polished resin surface captures the aesthetic of surfing and car culture unique to Southern California in the 1960s, the title — The Absolutely Naked Fragrance — was drawn from advertising slogans in fashion magazines.

The work’s interaction with both the floor and wall is meant to call attention to the space occupied in the gallery by both viewer and object.

“I see the plank as existing between two worlds,” McCracken said. “The floor representing the physical world of standing objects, trees, cars, buildings, human bodies, and everything, and the wall representing the world of the imagination, illusionistic painting space, human mental space and all that.”

The Absolutely Naked Fragrance is part of the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City

John McCracken Artist
Photo of a Photo of The Artist, By Gail

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Hauser & Wirth Presents Selections from the Reinhard Onnasch Collection

Claes Oldenberg
Claes Oldenberg Model for a Mahogany Plug, Scale B. 1969 (All Photos By Gail)

Hauser & Wirth’s cavernous space at 511 West 18th Street is currently hosting a selection of works from the collection of Reinhard Onnasch. A celebration of Onnasch’s longstanding passion for art and collecting, Re-View: Onnasch Collection is curated by Paul Schimmel, celebrated post-war scholar and Partner of Hauser Wirth & Schimmel.

Christo Wrapped Road Sign 1963
Christo Wrapped Road Sign 1963

The exhibition focuses on the period between 1950 and 1970, decades when New York’s cultural influence was unrivaled and some of the most important artistic movements of the 20th century were born. On view will be iconic examples of Pop Art, Fluxus, Color Field, Assemblage, Minimalism and Abstract Expressionism.

Claes Oldenberg Soft Medicine Cabinet
Claes Oldenberg Soft Medicine Cabinet, 1966

The collection will be on exhibit through April 12th, 2014.

Sol Lewitt’s Horizontal Progressions at PACE Gallery

Sol Lewitt Horizontal Progressions Gallery Shot
All Photos By Gail

If you enjoy minimalism and looking at sculptures that resemble bare bones architectural scale models, then you will go apeshit over the current Sol Lewitt exhibit, Horizontal Progressions now at PACE Gallery.

Sol Lewitt Horizontal Progressions

Sol Lewitt Horizontal Progressions

Sol Lewitt Horizontal Progressions

They are what they are. Be sure to stop in to the adjacent gallery to see PACE’s new Keith Sonneir exhibit, which will make the trip to West 25th Street worthwhile.

Sol Lewitt’s Horizontal Progressions will be on Exhibit Through February 22nd, 2014 at Pace Gallery, Located at 534 West 25th Street, NYC in the Chelsea Gallery District. Gallery Hours are Tuesday – Saturday, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Sol Lewitt Horizontal Progressions Signage

Nyehaus Presents Peter Alexander New Resin Works

Pink Signage for Peter Alexander Show
This Sign Says: Peter Alexander New Resin Works (All Photos By Gail, Click on any Image to Enlarge)

Nyehaus Gallery, located in a gorgeous restored brownstone on West 20th Street, has launched an exciting exhibition of new resin works by pioneering California-based Light and Space artist, Peter Alexander. This exhibit was a delightful companion piece to the Keith Sonnier exhibit I saw at Mary Boone last month, being all about minimalism, color and the interaction of light and art.

Red Square By Peter Alexander

Red and Green Perspective By Peter Alexander

Alexander described these works – in which fields of what initially appears to be one color vary in their gradation and degree of saturation – as being, “Like what water does on coastlines when you fly above it, that movement from saturated color to transparency where it fades and becomes part of the sand. I’m interested in addressing that moment with this work, when the whole piece becomes part of a greater thing, part of the air. It addresses the room it’s in. It wants to become a part of the room by disappearing into it.”

Pale Pink Square By Richard Alexander

Based on impressions I got from perusing Nyehaus’s Online Catalog of Alexander’s resin works (way worth checking out at that link, by the way), I was expecting a greater number of pieces in this exhibit. Sadly, there is only a fraction of the works on display throughout Nyehaus’s three floors of gallery space. Still, it is worth a trip for fans of color and minimalism.

What I love about Alexander’s work is how it challenges the viewer’s ways of seeing. In contrast to traditional paint on canvas, resin affords these works endless ability to play with the light of the rooms in which they are displayed. It’s challenging to capture the subtleties with a point and shoot camera, but very much in evidence when experiencing the artworks in person. I’ve tried to show the contrast in the shots below:

Blue Square Perspective By Peter Alexander

Blue Square Viewed from Hallway Outside Gallery

Blue Square By Peter Alexander

Blue Square Viewed from Close Up

Blue Square Detail By Peter Alexander

Blue Square Edge Detail

Beverages

Another fun and inviting aspect of any opening reception at Nyehaus is the fact that they always serve a selection of delicious Latin dishes, prepared fresh in the Nyehaus open kitchen. These days, many galleries have even cut back on serving wine at openings, so to have a full meal prepared for you is simply unheard of on the Chelsea gallery scene.

Pita and DipsServing food also boosts the social aspect of these gatherings, breaks down walls and brings people together. It’s such a great idea and so generous of Nyehaus.

Chicken Skewers

Latin Food

New Resin Works by Peter Alexander will be on Display at Nyehaus, located at 358 West 20th Street (just East of 9th Avenue) until April 20th, 2013. Gallery Hours are Tuesday to Saturday from 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Six Rod Array

Pink and Green Rod

Keith Sonnier 68-70 at Mary Boone Gallery, Chelsea

Keith Sonnier 68-70
All Photos By Gail

There is something so beautiful about the juxtaposition of neon tubing and glass panes. Geoffrey and I impulsively popped in to the Mary Boone Gallery on 24th Street last evening, on the way from Gagosian’s nearly overwhelming Basquiat retrospective to LeVine’s How & Nosm Pop Up on 23rd Street, and discovered an unexpected treat in Keith Sonnier’s 68-70 exhibit. The minimalism of this tiny show really served as an aesthetic palette cleanser between two rather busy exhibits.

Keith Sonnier 68-70

According to the Boone Gallery website, this exhibition of early works includes examples from Sonnier’s seminal and internationally acclaimed Ba-O-Ba and Neon Wrapping Incandescent Series. The works were all designed in Sonnier’s first New York studio to make use of the floor to wall relationship, as well as to utilize the reflective environment that working with neon and glass naturally creates.

Keith Sonnier 68-70

It’s interesting to note that Sonnier was playing with reflective properties as that very same challenge surfaced in trying to capture clean shots of these beautiful sculptures!

Keith Sonnier 68-70

Keith Sonnier 68-70 will be on exhibit through February 23rd, 2013 at Mary Boone Gallery – Chelsea, Located at 541 W. 24th Street, New York NY. Hours are 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Keith Sonnier 68-70