because i have no interest in those questions…
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects is pleased to present “because i have no interest in those questions…,” a solo exhibition of new paintings, photographs and mixed media works by Stuart Shils. Shils is known as a painter of landscapes. He has worked from direct observation in Ireland, Italy, and in the Philadelphia area. In his 2012 exhibition, The Residue of Memory, his work became increasingly abstract based on visual and experiential memory of a place rather than direct perception. Shils has long been fascinated by the perceptual process and the many screens and filters that characterize each moment of looking. In this exhibition, he extends his consideration to the photographic lens.
Shils’ photographs depict the deteriorating buildings and peeling urban walls around downtown Philadelphia. His architectural subjects appear in a state of flux. The layers of paint on the façade of a building evoke seasons of decay, yet are captured in the click. David Cohen writes about the inter-relationship of Shils’ photography and painting, in his essay for Shils’ new book, “His discovery is of correlatives of painting in the layering that exists—or rather that is revealed to exist through slow looking—within the humanly built environment. His photographic motifs often entail viewings through meshes and apertures and coming back at the viewer/photographer in mirrors or reflective panes—instances of observation that structurally mimic camera work. In much the same way, the palimpsest of screens and frames that characterize his photographic motifs are equivalents of a painting process that is somehow at once alla prima and layered, marked equally by impressionistic responses and minutely deliberative editing, a kind of temporal push-pull that exploits dichotomies of composure and snap.”
Shils’ corresponding paintings of urban architectures further blur the boundaries between representation and abstraction, observation and memory. Much like the walls he photographs, the layered surfaces of his paintings reveal the history of their making. His beautiful compositions of shifting color and shape evoke the impression of place. Shils also paints on top of his photographs, creating mesmerizing images that further reveal the interconnectedness of his mediums and the fluidity of time, place and memory.
Stuart Shils studied at The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts with Seymour Remenick and at the Philadelphia College of Art. He is the recipient of a Pollack-Krasner Foundation Grant, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. This is his second solo exhibition at the gallery. Concurrent with the exhibition is an artist book with an essay by David Cohen. Shils will also be speaking at the gallery on Saturday, Dec 13 at at 2pm. Please contact the gallery at 917-861-7312 or email@example.com for more information.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects present Artifacts, a solo exhibition of paintings by E.M. Saniga. This exhibition has two components. The first is a collection of new works by the artist, depicting Quaker artifacts and structures from the area surrounding Saniga’s home in rural Lancaster County Pennsylvania. The second, on view at PR0JECTOR, our pop-up location on Eldridge Street, is a survey of the artist’s earlier paintings, with many works borrowed from private collections.
Saniga’s still lifes depict ceramic and metal fragments excavated from the site of a burnt down 18th century Quaker frame house discovered on the property of neighbor and amateur archeologist Peter Deen. Other objects and materials described in these works derive from museum collections, memory and imagination. The landscapes included in the exhibition, depict original Quaker houses in and around Lancaster County, such as the 1770 Quaker home Saniga lives in with his family.
On view in the rear of the gallery, is a table from Saniga’s studio, displaying a number of these artifacts, providing a glimpse into Saniga’s studio practice. In addition to being a painter, Saniga is a Distinguished Professor of Information Technology at the University of Delaware, For him science and art share a unique bond as exploratory processes without forgone conclusions. He observes, “There are a few similarities between what I do in painting and in mathematical model building, which is the primary concern of my research. Both are abstractions of reality, and both can yield unexpected outcomes, which is part of their magic. Both involve invention.”
Saniga paints from observation and memory, creating a model of reality at once naturalistic and mysterious, analytical and poetic. His motifs are traditional yet paradoxically unfamiliar. His paintings carry a sensitivity to the beauty of death and decay.
Saniga studied with Seymour Remenick at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and privately under Bruce Kurland. He endows a residency program called the Charles and Lois Carlson Landscape Painting Prize awarded to a Pennsylvania Academy student. This is Saniga’s third exhibition at Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects. His work was exhibited at The Lancaster Museum of Art in 2012.
Opening: Sunday, September 7, 6-8 pm
September 7- October 12, 2014
208 Forsyth Street New York, NY 10002
Weds – Sun 12 – 6pm and by appointment
2 locations: 208 forsyth st and 237 eldridge st.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Leaves, a survey of contemporary drawings and works on paper by Peter Acheson, Mequitta Ahuja, Chuck Bowdish, Katherine Bradford, Dawn Clements, Jacob El Hanani, Gregory Gillespie, June Leaf, Sangram Majumdar and Fulvio Testa. The ten artists range from seasoned draftsmen to artists at the beginning of their careers and come from across the globe. Each of them, however, has a remarkably individualized sensibility and may be considered a master in his/her own right.
Katherine Bradford’s works on paper are, as Ken Johnson puts it, “comical yet earnest.” Her glowing colors and vulnerable shapes often describe ocean liners and people at sea. The deliberate naiveté of her subjects evoke innocence without sentimentality – they have the quality of adult reveries and regressions. Bradford’s work is included in various public collections, including the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Portland Museum, among others. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2011, and was a recipient of a Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant in 2012. A close peer of Bradford’s, Peter Acheson is a pioneer of a similarly raw vocabulary. His scribbled drawings map a disconnected world. Acheson is in the tradition of artists such as Forest Bess and Gandy Brodie. His drawings encompass language–as-mark making with phrases entangled in thickets of line. Acheson was born in Washington, D.C and lives in Ghent, NY. His work is included in the Brooklyn Museum’s permanent collection.
From large scale painted collages to tiny jewel-like watercolors, Chuck Bowdish’s work is figurative visual poetry, calling on both classical imagery (Grecian urns and nude torsos) and images of menace right out of the headlines. His draftsmanship seems effortless and precise and his impulse to castigate the world comes from a pure place. He is the kind of artist who makes you reconsider your assumptions. Bowdish is the subject of a documentary film by Peter Wareing entitled Chuck Bowdish: Painter and has been included in recent exhibitions in Atlanta, Williamsburg and Long Island City. Concurrently with Leaves, Bowdish’s work may be seen at the John Davis Gallery in Hudson, N.Y.
The estimable painter and sculptor June Leaf, was born in Chicago in 1929 and has lived in New York since the early 60's. Her drawings are directly related to her sculpture; they are diagrammatic and notational, having almost the quality of maps, and share an acknowledgement of humanity’s grace and foibles. Leaf’s works on paper call to mind the inventive sketches of da Vinci and Alexander Calder. Leaf had her first solo exhibition at Sam Bordelon Gallery in Chicago in 1948 and has since exhibited internationally. She is included in numerous museum collections, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York The Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Art Institute of Chicago.
Jacob El Hanani was born in Morocco in 1947 and grew up in Israel. His work draws on the tradition of micrography in Judaism, a technique used in the decoration and transcription of holy texts. El Hanani’s incredibly intricate ink drawings are created through the careful repetition of tiny marks. These extraordinary works appear to be a pattern from a distance; they are mediations on time and infinity. El Hanani’s work is included in many notable public collections, including The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Jewish Museum, Musee national d’Arte Moderne, Centre George Pompidou, Paris, The National Gallery of Art, DC.
Fulvio Testa is one of Italy’s most distinguished artists and illustrators. Working in watercolor and ink with muted tones, Testa’s small scale, elegant landscapes have little demarcation between land and sky and seem influenced by Chinese scroll paintings. His work is represented in a number of public collections, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the New York Public Library. In addition to his own prizewinning titles, he has illustrated books by authors such as Anthony Burgess and Gianni Rodari. He divides his time between Verona, Italy, and New York.
Sangram Majumdar was born in Calcutta, India and received his MFA from Indiana University. Majumdar works from elaborate backdrops and dioramas constructed in his studio, layering decorative and painterly elements that disappear and reappear in the working process. Majumdar’s final compositions house a multitude of hidden possibilities. This group of drawings represents all the monochrome work related to a single painting, enabling us to visualize this world of potentiality. Majumdar has taught at the Maryland Institute College of Art since 2003. Concurrently with Leaves, Majumdar’s oil paintingsa will be exhibited at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
Dawn Clements was born in Massachusetts in 1958. She works with Sumi ink and ballpoint pen on paper, ranging in size from small to monumental. Through an active, almost performative working process, the paper becomes distressed with folds, wrinkles, and seams. Clements subjects are the observed everyday spaces of her apartment and studio, and film stills, which she scales up to life-size proportion. Clements’ work was included in the Whitney Biennial in 2010, and she is represented in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and The Saatchi Collection, London.
Mequitta Ahuja defines her artistic practice as Automythography (a variant on Audrey Lorde’s phrase.) In her large-scale paintings on paper she places images of herself in the midst of tumbling worlds of tightly woven pattern and color, with an overall pictorial density that speaks to the layered patterns of Persian miniatures. Last spring she had an artist residency in Siena, Italy. Included in Leaves are examples of pastels inspired by her residency, in which Ahuja incorporates herself into the Romulus and Remus mythology of Siena (according to tradition Remus’ son Senio was the founder of Siena.) Her work is included in recent and upcoming exhibitions at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, The Minneapolis Institute of Art and The Saatchi Gallery.
The late Massachusetts born visionary painter Gregory Gillespie (1936-2000) defies categorization. He championed a fiercely obsessive realism in the Sixties when Pop and abstraction held sway, yet his vocabulary is so psychologically potent and mystically laced that it pushes past the realms of the real. His oeuvre comprises haunting self-portraits, surreal landscapes, symbolic geometric abstractions, and singular monumental object/paintings. His process is equally expansive, combining meticulous oil painting with photomontage, collage and assemblage. In his late work, which is included in this exhibition, he also inlays photocopied images into the painting surface. Gillespie drew inspiration across the history of European painting (Balthus, Bruegel, Bosch, Crivelli to name a few), as well as from classical mythology, Buddhism, Indian sculpture, and Tibetan and Mayan art. The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden presented a retrospective of Gillespie’s work when he was forty years old, garnering him national prominence. Gillespie’s work is included in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, among others.
Leaves takes place in two spaces; at SHFAP’s main gallery at 208 Forsyth St, and around the corner at PROJECTOR, our pop-up space at 237 Eldridge. Please contact the gallery at firstname.lastname@example.org or 917-861-7312 for further information or images.
Group show and installation
Opening: July 8th, 6-8pm
July 8th, – August 15th, 2014
208 Forsyth Street New York, NY 10002
Magic Flying Carpets
Opening: May 31, 5-7 pm
May 28 – June 29, 2014
SHFAP @ PROJECTOR
237 Eldridge Street
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents our third solo exhibition of paintings by Kurt Knobelsdorf. Knobelsdorf is a visionary painter of altered realities. His imagery reveals a profound sympathy for undercurrents in American life. Dogs, horses, kids, baseball players, astronauts and professional wrestlers appear swathed in dense textures of paint and found materials, Knobelsdorf compresses a multiplicity of meanings into a single image. His recent paintings accentuate surface materiality. Although texture has always been important in Knobelsdorf’s paintings, his new work veers into the unknown, coasting on the edge of image and abstraction.
Knobelsdorf was born in Detroit, Michigan and grew up along Florida’s Gulf Coast. His sympathetic and impious images of decaying America have roots in these places. Knobelsdorf studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. He currently lives in Brooklyn, New York and Philadelphia, Pa.
Knobelsdorf’s paintings are included in the current American Academy of Arts and Letters Exhibition of Work by Newly Elected Members and Recipients of Honors and Awards, on display at the American Academy, located on Audobon Terrace, west side of Broadway, between 155th and 156th Streets, through June 15th. The citation for his John Koch Award in Art from the Academy states that Knobelsdorf’s paintings “focus our attention on scenes of daily life which, for must of us, have gone unnoticed. So suffused with the primal, clay-like materiality of his paint, the light in his work oozes and the slowness of this emanation make these incidental moments remarkable.”
Knobelsdorf honors the silent absurdity of experience. As John Yau puts it, “This is the emotional core of Knobelsdorf’s work: no matter who we are, some part of us remains anonymous and unfathomable, both to others and ourselves.” Knobelsdorf has found a way to make ‘handmade’ painting urgent, outrageous and essential.
Opening: May 28, 6-8 pm
May 28 – June 29, 2014
208 Forsyth Street New York, NY 10002
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents a solo exhibition of recent paintings by Stephanie Pierce. This is her first solo exhibition in New York City.
Pierce’s paintings describe unmade beds, plants and windows combining layers of transparent and opaque paint to produce a shimmering optical description of place. Her paintings seem to be in a state of flux, assembling and disintegrating before the viewer. Working from prolonged observation, Pierce tracks the passage of light through its liminal hours. Traces acculmulate and evolve into images that threaten to lapse into abstraction. Her working process follows a similar rhythm; she explains “it’s a continual looking, responding, destroying, renewing.”
As Pierce paints, her position in relation to her subjects shifts, at times dramatically, so that a window might appear at once close and far away. Like Giacometti, she probes the space between herself and her subjects, activating this distance. Pierce selects subjects that evoke transformation: windows, radios or plants. In looking at her paintings we become complicit in her perceptual process. In “Cosmos,” we are squinting into a garden of rustling orange petals at an obscured image of the painter gazing back at us from a mirror hidden amongst the flowers.
Pierce also runs a DIY art/music project space in Fayettesville, Arkansas called Lalaland with Sam King. Music especially, punk, is an essential part of her artistic make-up. She has stated, I ”continually come back to early punk music as an influence in how I want to think about painting. It’s been inspiration for being so direct, energetic, driven, and human. Music influences my paintings when it’s a kind of beautiful chaos, when it’s dissonant and strange, with moments that verge on the point of breaking down yet hold together, I’m always after something that touches on that kind of moment in my paintings.”
Pierce was born in Memphis, TN and received her MFA from the University of Washington. She currently lives and teaches in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Opening: April 23, 6-8 pm
April 23– May 25, 2014
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents a solo exhibition of recent mixed media works on paper by Sandro Chia (b. 1946) focussed on his classic motif of a solitary male figure in the landscape. Chia is a significant figure in the Transavanguardia movement, an Italian outgrowth of Neo-expressionism, which garnered international attention in the 1980s. This will be the first exhibition of Chia’s work at Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects. The title of the exhibition, “Sator Arepo,” is adopted from a Latin palindrome word square with magical associations, found inscribed on ancient Roman stone tablets.
After graduating from the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence in 1969, Chia travelled throughout Europe and India. Upon his return to Rome, he began exhibiting what he now refers to as ‘mythical conceptual’ painting and sculpture. During the late 1970s, he transitioned to a more figurative style, quickly establishing himself as a key Transavanguardia artist, along with contemporaries Francesco Clemente, Enzo Cucchi and Mimmo Paladino.
Realized on small sheets with watercolor, pastel and other media, Chia’s vibrant colors, cubist spaces and expressive draftsmanship appropriate, echo and send up romantic figures of art history including Carlo Carra, Matisse, Chagall, Picasso and Courbet. His imagery often draws upon classic mythology and makes references to antiquity. Yet, as Dr. Maurizio Vanni observes in his essay ‘The Loneliness of the Hero’, “Chia tends to humanize his heroes, making them almost everyday subjects.”
Chia presents painting as a magic alchemical language, able to give voice to man’s inexplicable search for meaning. In an interview conducted by Richard Milazzo, Chia defines his relationship to his work:
“Many people see art as something that comes from something positive or elevated inside us, as a humanistic enterprise. I disagree with that. I’m not even sure that it comes for us. It probably comes from ‘outside,’ from nature, from everything that surrounds us, and we are not the center but rather the ‘empty space’ in between. Maybe we are not even the source, but this source is given to us, it goes through ourselves.”
Chia’s work has been included in the Biennale of Paris and San Paolo and the Venice Biennale. He has had solo exhibition at many of the most important museums worldwide, among them: Stedelijk Museum of Amsterdam (1983), The Metropolitan Museum of New York (1984), The National Gallery of Berlin (1984, 1992), The Museum of Modern Art of Paris (1984).
In 2003, the Italian State acquired three of Chia’s works for their permanent collection at Palazzo Madama, and in 2005, the Province of Rome installed two monumental sculptures by Chia in front of its headquarters in Via IV Novembre. Chia’s work was the subject of an exhibition entitled Gods and Heroes at the Boca Raton Museum of Art, Florida in 2007.
Today Sandro Chia divides his time between Miami, Rome and his Castello Romitorio vineyard in Tuscany.
SHFAP @ PROJECTOR, our second space located around the corner at 237 Eldridge Street, presents a group show featuring paintings by Chuck Bowdish, Katherine Bradford, Paul Resika and Bob Thompson in conversation with the work of Sandro Chia.
For more information, please contact the gallery at email@example.com or 917-861-7312.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Eleanor Ray: Paintings. This is Ray’s second solo exhibition at the gallery.
Eleanor Ray (b.1987) is a recent graduate of the New York Studio School. Working from both photography and observation on masonite panels which often measure only 4 x 5 inches, Ray makes extremely small-scale works that play with the tropes of representational painting.
Ray’s brushwork is both sensitive and sensual; her work carries a poetic force and visual intensity. Her sidewalks, snowy tennis courts and sparse interiors suggest a space that is both intimate and expansive. Indeed, there is a recollective sensibility to her work – we can feel as though we are peering out a window or through a doorway onto a place that we have seen before. While many of her new works depict familiar streets of downtown Brooklyn, some move as far afield as Venice and Florence.
Ray’s work has caught the attention of critics as diverse as Jerry Saltz and Jed Perl. Saltz included Ray’s first solo show at SHFAP in his list of the 10 Best Art Shows of 2013 for New York Magazine:
“When I stumbled on the small oil paintings of this very young artist at this tiny Lower East Side gallery, I gleaned what might be the power of the conservative. Figuration, older ideas about space, surface, and paint in intimate interiors, street scenes, and winter landscapes—all evince delicate touch, acute eye, and quiet power.”
And in his article, Richard Diebenkorn and the problems of modern painting published in the New Republic, Jed Perl sights Ray as an exemplar of the difficult position young painters are in today.
“You have probably never heard of the young painter Eleanor Ray, but she is a virtuoso, no question about it. The sizes of the panels on which she paints…suggest a reverse hubris, a pride in how much she can do with so little.”
Eleanor Ray herself, wrote in a piece about the painter Elena Sisto that, “Her most recent paintings have an ease and inevitability...” With their graceful painterly assurance and intimate scale Ray’s own paintings carry an understated critique of the macho bravura of much contemporary art, with their own exquisite pictorial architecture.
and Bill Rice
Concurrently, in our new space, around the corner at PROJECTOR, 237 Eldridge St, we present City Nights, an exhibition of paintings by Jane Dickson (b.1952) and Bill Rice (1931 – 2006). Contemporaries and friends, both artists are poetic observers of pre-gentrification New York, depicting the city’s nocturnal underbelly. Bill Rice was an actor who appeared in underground film and theater, an independent scholar and painter of atmospheric street scenes of the Lower East Side. Holland Cotter in The New York Times wrote, “the pictures with their thin washes of oil paint, are at once rigorously geometric in structure and smokily gestural as abstract Phillip Guston’s.” Rice wrote of his paintings, “Ideally I would like to invest the rectangle – the basic unit in any city scape – with the sensuality, color, texture, I find in the streets. I like to record the young, elegant, Black, Asian and Hispanic men who know how to move and glow in what would otherwise be a dreary landscape.” Rice’s work came to wider attention in 1985 when the poet Rene Ricard, penned a long paean to Rice in Artforum. Ricard stated that Rice was the “greatest living painter of the city, and in his painting there is no other city than New York, black New York.”
Bill Rice had shows at Patrick Fox Gallery, at 56 Bleecker St Gallery, at Janis Gallery in an exhibition organized by Richard Milazzo, and at Mitchell Algus. His most recent exhibition was at SHFAP’s 73rd Street space in June of 2011.
Jane Dickson, is known for her paintings of Times Square in the eighties, where she lived with her husband, the filmmaker, Charlie Ahearn, painting the neon light of bars and strip clubs. Glenn O’Brien wrote “Dickson’s transcendental reportage updates realism with the full blown post-modern spectrum of artificial light. The sun never intrudes on Dickson’s pictures. This is a world of endless night, where black light is the beacon of the black hole of desire.”
Using unorthodox supports such as black vinyl, astroturf, sandpaper and carpet, Dickson subsequently developed a broader view of American reality encompassing the suburbs, highways, casinos, amusement parks and demolition derbies.
Dickson’s vision (and Rice’s) might, in a different period, be termed “social realism.” Critic Peter Schjeldahl refutes this stating “Dickson is nothing if not a messenger bearing the news that those concepts, among others with which we presume to subdue the unruly, have imploded.”
Dickson has had solo exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art, at Phillip Morris and The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Her work is included in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Whitney Museum of American Art among others. She was 2014 recipient of a Painters and Sculptors Grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation.
The show includes a handful of important paintings by both artists including loans from private collections.
Welcome to the Afterfuture
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Welcome to the Afterfuture an installation of new paintings by Gideon Bok (b. 1966). This is Bok’s third solo exhibition at the gallery. Bok recently began a professorship at Boston University; this body of work chronicles his new studio environment in Boston.
Throughout his career, Gideon Bok has recorded the ebb and flow of people and objects in his studio. He accumulates traces of fragmentary experience in his painting, creating a map of the perceptual moment in time. The perspective in Bok’s studio bows and expands – we have the impression of looking in many directions at once. Bok’s layers of translucent paint enable the history of the image to evolve in real time. By overlaying multiple ‘still frames’, Bok envisions a cinematic parallel in painting.
In his new work, Bok’s paintings of records scatter the studio floor. It’s a meta twist: both the records and the paintings of the records have become part of the studio environment. Bok is a musician. His studio interiors are scattered with musical references (instruments, record players and albums), reminding us of the connecting thread between painting and music, in the work of Basquiat, Capt. Beefheart/Don Van Vliet, or John Lurie.
Bok’s documentation of his studio, and performance of perception, strike a chord with the Whitney’s recent Rituals of Rented Island exhibition of 70 – 80’s Performance in artist’s studios, lofts and alternative spaces. Bok’s painting relates as well to the intensive observational painting of Frank Auerbach, and the stylistic invention of painters like Dana Schutz.
Bok received his MFA from Yale in 1996. He is a recipient of a 2004 Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship, as well as a Purchase Award through The American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 2005, his work was surveyed in an exhibition at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Elemental an exhibition of recent paintings by Susanna Coffey. This is her second solo show at the gallery—her Nocturnes were exhibited at SHFAP in 2012. In this exhibition, Coffey reexamines a subject that has concerned her for decades: the parameters of the self-portrait. What does the ‘self’ look like, what are its boundaries, and where can it be seen? Paintings from the last three years employ differing approaches to producing an image of self. We see faces encoded in landscape and ultimately dissolving within the facture of painted surfaces.
Apophenia describes the phenomenon of seeing faces in clouds or hearing words in the wind. Upon first encountering these works, it is not immediately apparent that they contain faces at all—the subject is camouflaged in patterns of color or lost in watery and verdant landscapes. Coffey’s portraits seem to grow roots; they are entangled, literally inseparable, from their grounds. As Coffey explores the rich psychological space between self and mirror, meaning becomes located in the tension between what is made visible and what is obscured.
Coffey’s gestural lines and evocative tonalities vibrate with human energy and complexity. Her vibrant textured surfaces display a painterly exuberance – she seems to delight in the difficulty of this project. Coffey’s ability to evoke a range of political and spiritual states calls to mind one of her influences, the rich symbolic language of West African figurative sculpture.
Coffey’s self-portraits stand in for individual or collective states of being. In these paintings, one begins to sense one’s own reflection. They reveal an artist coming to terms with what is being done in her name; they ask what are the boundaries between self and society? In the artist’s own words: “I think about the interconnections between people. Like how Aspen trees have a common root system. They look like they are different trees but they are all the same, really. Differences are maybe not as fascinating as similarities. Similarities are never exact, but they are beautiful.” Steve Locke wrote that, “Coffey is painting a new kind of space… She is painting the interference, the attitudes, the obfuscations between the understanding of the self. “
Coffey’s paintings were surveyed at the New York Studio School in 2008. Her work is included in the collections of The Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and The Art Institute of Chicago, The Indianapolis Museum of Art, The Akron Museum of Art, The Weatherspoon Art Museum, The Honolulu Academy of Art, The Minneapolis Museum of Art, and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Seville, Spain.
The exhibition is accompanied by a full color catalog.
Works by Peter Acheson, Lester Johnson, Kurt Knobelsdorf, Lauren Luloff, Sangram Majumdar and Matt Phillips will be available for viewing at PROJECTOR 237 Eldridge Street by appointment.
Torque, 2013, 38 x 42in, oil on linen
peel: an exhibition of new paintings
Opening reception Friday, November 22, 6-8 pm
an exhibition in two parts
November 20- December 22, 2013
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents "peel", our third solo exhibition of paintings by Sangram Majumdar. This exhibition is presented in two parts- with paintings and works on paper at steven harvey fine art projects at 208 Forsyth St and larger paintings at Projector around the corner from SHFAP, at 237 Eldridge Street.
Majumdar’s new body of work continues his investigation into the boundary between the facts of reality and the discursive and associative nature of experience itself. While rooted in careful and daily observation of his surroundings, the motifs are no longer immediately recognizable. The paintings unfold slowly; forms and narratives play hide-and-seek with the viewer. Through a rigorous pursuit of the perceptual experience, he expands the perimeters of contemporary representation.
Majumdar’s paintings begin at the point where nature is interrupted. His studio becomes a laboratory for the restructuring of the interior of a found dollhouse, a readymade postcard rack bought online, or his own drawings. As Majumdar paints, he begins to cut away at the unnecessary – the paintings takes on their own life and lift off from reality’s familiar ground. In a series of unlikely left turns, they jettison into space, where more is hidden than found, and the familiar is strange once again.
“I look at the world with open eyes, and what I find are echoes, parallel possibilities, spaces interrupted and painterly interventions. In a world of images that are accessible instantaneously and erased in the next moment, what stays?”
Sangram Majumdar received his BFA from Rhode Island School of Design, and his MFA from Indiana University. Recent solo exhibitions include Rothschild Fine Art, Tel Aviv, Israel; Pulse, NY; the Jerusalem Studio School, Israel, and the Kresge Art Museum, MI. He is a recipient of the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo residency and the Marie Walsh Sharpe Studio Space Program Grant. His work was included in the 2010 Invitational Exhibition of Visual Arts at the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is a full time faculty member in at the Maryland Institute College of Art.
The exhibition is accompanied by a 36 page full color catalog with an essay by David Humphrey.
October 16 – November 17, 2013
October 16, 6–8 pm<
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Dark Paintings 1960-65 by Lester Johnson. SHFAP exhibited Johnson’s two Last Paintings in 2011 in our rear gallery. The paintings in this exhibition are drawn from the Artist’s Estate.
This exhibition focuses on a group of major works from the early 1960s that. Johnson created while working in his studio at 222 Bowery in downtown Manhattan. The monochrome works in Dark Paintings present a unified group within Johnson’s overall oeuvre. Single figures and urban groups swim in dense painterly fields of intensely worked monochromatic color, the figures merged within the rectangle lend a powerful unity to figure and ground.
John Yau writes that,
“More than fifty years after his work first gained attention, his monochrome silhouettes remain strong and fresh, as well as anticipate the work of Joyce Pensato and others.“
Johnson’s 222 Bowery studio was directly across from the Bowery Mission, where homeless men lined up for assistance.
James Kalm wrote in the Brooklyn Rail:
“With his studio near the Bowery, Johnson found the subject for his first major breakthrough in the guise of the downtrodden men who flocked to the area for its cheap bars and dollar-a-night hotels. The early paintings are dark and reductive, brooding with existential angst. … aware not only of the AbEx painterliness of de Kooning, Still, and Pollock, but also of the European “Material Painters” like Dubuffet.“
Dore Ashton speculated that Johnson was influenced by seeing a 1948 exhibition of work by Alberto Giacometti at the Pierre Matisse Gallery. There is a profound connection between the monochromatic figures of Johnson and Giacometti. Both confront the existential state of the figure in a void. Yet, in contrast with Giacometti’s sculptural stillness, Johnson’s figures are always in flux. Johnson stated:
“There is no balance in my paintings because balance seems to me to be static. Life, which I try to reflect in my paintings, is dynamic …. To me, my paintings are action paintings—paintings that move across the canvases, paintings that do not get stuck, but flow like time.”
Johnson was born in Minneapolis. He studied with two former students of Hans Hofmann- Alexander Masley at the Minneapolis School of Art and Cameron Booth at the St Paul School of Art. After moving to NYC in 1947 he shared a studio with Larry Rivers. He worked as a framer for Baroness Hilla Rebay at the Guggenheim Museum. His work transitioned from abstraction into figurative and landscape imagery in the early 1950s in Provincetown and New York. . He was one of the few figurative artists to be a member of The Club. In 1962 he began to show with the Martha Jackson Gallery.
Johnson taught at Yale from 1964- 1989 and served as the director of the graduate painting program at the Yale School of Art and Architecture between 1969-74 . He was received a Guggenheim Fellowship in painting in 1976, a Citation in Painting at the 1987 Brandeis University Creative Arts Awards, and in 2003 was honored for lifetime achievement by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York. His work is included in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum among many others.
The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog with an essay by scholar/collector Herbert Lust.
2013, mixed media on paper, 11 x 11 3/8 in
September 8 – October 13, 2013
Sunday, Sept 8, 4-8 pm
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Small Ships, a solo exhibition of work by Katherine Bradford. The show will include sculptures, small paintings and gouaches. It is the first time her sculptures have been shown in New York City. The exhibition will focus on Bradford’s motif of ships at sea.
Bradford’s imagery of the Titanic and ocean liners alludes to the human frailty within the liner’s massive form. Bradford’s painting can be interpreted as a meditation on masculinity, a play on the convention of maritime painting, or a rethinking of the American hero.
Bradford was an abstract painter who now works with imagery. In 1989, Roberta Smith wrote that “Bradford’s paintings are beautifully made, sincerely felt and distinguished by a special talent for schematizing nature into small, ruggedly made paintings that are at once poetic and humorous.”
Bradford’s current paintings have loose, quirky handmade patterns, spaces, and geometries. Her ships float in friendly apocalyptic grounds. Her closest peers are Peter Acheson and Chris Martin, also pioneers of this raw vocabulary and influential to a younger generation of painters.
The textured surfaces of Bradford’s paintings relate to the funky fabrication of her sculptures. Bradford’s sculptures play dramatically with scale. She depicts steel monumentality out of model-scale cardboard and paint.
Bradford was the subject of a recent exhibition at Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Maine, and received much acclaim for her show at Edward Thorp Gallery in 2012. She was included in numerous group exhibitions across the Lower East Side and Brooklyn over the past year. Her work is included in various public collections, including the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Portland Museum, the Addison Gallery of American Art and the Worcester Museum. Bradford was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2011, and was a recipient of a Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant in 2012.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents two exhibitions. In the front gallery are Rosemarie Beck’s Le Maquillage/Magdalen series, her first narrative figure paintings from the early sixties. Concurrently, in the rear gallery, SHFAP presents Visual Perception, paintings and drawings by Seymour Remenick (1923-1999).
Rosemarie Beck (1923-2003) studied at Robert Motherwell’s school and was mentored by Phillip Guston and Bradley Walker Tomlin. Her abstractions from the 1950s were inspired by Guston’s Abstract Impressionism and championed by the young Hilton Kramer. In 1960, however, she eschewed abstraction for a figuration that was at once personal and mythical. Her paintings have an almost textile-like weave and touch, like the embroideries she also made.
This exhibition presents three major related paintings from the early 1960s that address the theme of the artist in the studio. In Rosemarie Beck’s studio, the artist is a woman, surrounded by women, making-up, posing, reading and painting. These women are echoed in the images on the canvases around the studio: the studio is a mirror reflecting itself. A blonde sylph-like Magdalen with a long white ribbon in her hair glides through the different canvases. In another painting, the model appears to be Beck herself: she is both witness and actor.
There is something delightfully subversive about seeing the traditional view of an artist’s studio so thoroughly occupied by women in a multiplicity of guises. Beck lived her life as a profound intellect amidst a bevy of brilliant men. In her Maquillage/Magdalen series, she envisioned her studio as a refuge of the feminine.
The exhibition will also include a group of Beck’s small abstracted oil on cardboards, painted throughout her career. The Beck exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog with an essay by Jennifer Samet, who has written about Beck and interviewed her shortly before her death.
Seymour Remenick followed a parallel path, studying in the mid 1940s with Hans Hofmann before making a turn toward representation around 1950. Remenick eschewed his modernist schematic color and composition for an almost Dutch small-format vision of landscape, painted directly from observation in a deliberately dark palette.
Throughout the 1960s and 70s his palette brightened and he developed a spontaneous shorthand and a tangible perceptual intimacy with his subject. Remenick arguably employs the purest approach of any post-war American painter to plein-air landscape painting.
Fairfield Porter wrote about his work: “Remenick expresses as well as it is expressed today, the idea that the ends of painting are to be found in its means.” When Remenick writes that “Rembrandt not only eliminates the dross and the inconsequential, but he also introduces the elements of air and the spatial nuances produced by light,“ he could reasonably be speaking about his own work, with its paired down eloquence and variety of tone and atmosphere. This exhibition will also include examples of his early works. In 2010, Remenick’s work was surveyed at The Lancaster Museum of Art.
The Professor’s Regret (from the Doors series),
2000, acrylic on canvas, 18 x 24 inches
a group show
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents dooroomwindow, a two-part exhibition at the gallery (April 29- May 26) and at PULSE New York, May 9 – 12 (The Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 West 18th Street, New York City).
dooroomwindow is a group show about interior space and how we see it. Doors, windows and rooms are framing devices, lenses, apertures and containers. The objects in rooms reflect absent figures. Framed by a doorway a standing figure mirrors the essential relationship of an image to a rectangle.
The gallery portion of the exhibition includes paintings by Jane Dickson, Bill Rice, Kurt Knobelsdorf, Gideon Bok, Eleanor Ray and Stephanie Pierce.
Jane Dickson (b.1952) best known for her paintings of an earlier outlaw Times Square at night. conveys a sense of urban isolation with a cinematic framing of partial figure in a night hotel.
Bill Rice (1931-2006), painter and actor, was a fixture of the East Village avant-garde art and theater scenes in the 1970s, 80s and 90s. Painter of New York’s street life, Rice’s gritty views through windows and alleys carry an atmosphere of mysterious erotic possibility.
Kurt Knobelsdorf (b.1979) works from life, photos or the internet. His densely painted snapshot-like depictions of people and architecture convey a ferocious painterly integrity.
Gideon Bok (b. 1966) records the flow of people and objects through his studio. His paintings are an accumulation of details, a series of moments that build up to an image of a room.
In extremely small paintings, Eleanor Ray (b.1987) a recent New York Studio School M.F.A., plays with the tropes of painterly representation. Her work is both familiar and luminous, like seeing through a window into a place we know.
Stephanie Pierce (b. 1974) constructs interior spaces out of fractured shards of color and light. Her paintings seem to unfold and evaporate simultaneously before the viewer’s eye.
The artists in the corresponding exhibition at PULSE include Guy Yanai, Karla Wozniak, Robert Birmelin, and Sangram Majumdar.
Guy Yanai (b.1977) lives and works in Tel Aviv. His paintings of everyday spaces and modernist architecture break down into highly saturated coloring-book color blocks. In Karla Wozniak’s (b.1978) paintings of the American landscape, road signs and billboards are montaged in a manner that can be related to 20th century Modernist painters such as Ralston Crawford and Stuart Davis.
Robert Birmelin’s (b.1933) is known for his New York crowd scenes, His Doors series are reversible compositions that play with perception as they up-end the world. His work is included in the collections of The Metropolitan Museum, The Museum of Modern Art and The Hirshhorn Museum among many others.
Sangram Majumdar’s (b. 1976) paintings of open spaces, voids and accumulated objects in the studio challenge the viewer’s understanding of paintings relationship to what is seen.
Concurrently with dooroomwindow in SHFAP’s rear gallery we are exhibiting the paintings of Peter Acheson (b.1954). Part of a generation of freestyle Williamsburg painters, including Katherine Bradford and Chris Martin, the breadth of Acheson’s work encapsulates density, collage and language delivered with rawness and complexity.
this, and then
Matt Phillips (b. 1979) is a Brooklyn-based abstract painter whose DIY geometries draw upon decorative, digital and modernist abstraction. Phillips received his MFA from Boston University. This is his first solo exhibition in a New York gallery. Phillips is active in Brooklyn’s pop up art scene. He is a founding member of the nonprofit gallery TSA in Bushwick. His works on paper were surveyed at Mount Holyoke Museum in the spring of 2012. He collaborated with painter Andrea Bergart on a mural that covered the gallery walls for SHFAP’s summer 2012 exhibition The Jam.
Phillips combines acrylic and oil to create vibrant, optical, mixed-media abstractions. Despite their geometric structures, his paintings retain a softness and improvised sensibility related to decorative traditions of textiles. For Phillips, “quilts share many familiar ideas with geometric abstraction. But when pinned up on the wall—they move, flop, and sag. “
Phillips’ painting has a whimsical gravity, teetering between stable pattern and tumbling form. Phillips uses the fundamental elements of painting: simple shapes, modulated values and color relationships. He mixes and remixes these components to produce unexpected outcomes that become more than the sum of their ingredients. Color, shape, mark and form engage one another in strangely familiar and human ways: they become tense, humorous, quirky and ultimately meaningful. Phillips’ work simultaneously relates to Alfred Jensen, Marimekko patterns and Gee’s Bend quilts.
Peter LaBier’s (b. 1980) vision spans a range of expressive form: he is musician, dancer, draftsman and painter. LaBier is concerned with the total recording and transmitting of an experience in time.
LaBier’s drawings demonstrate a freedom and virtuosic intensity. His wiry, dense and expressive line recalls that of Giacometti and Van Gogh. LaBier works from direct observation; his hand moves elegantly through his subjects with an animated freedom, giving the impression of a kind of collaborative dance between artist, subject and page. His work echoes the past and emerges as a strikingly contemporary.
LaBier derives his imagery from an odd assortment of isolated still life subjects: a child’s organ, a Tibetan lion figurine, a porcelain glove mold, pineapples, Egyptian heads, Greek sculpture and vases of flowers. He engages the history of still life painting serially in sequences that recall draftsman/animators like Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki and William Kentridge.
He has exhibited at Plane Space gallery in New York and at Agent Gallery in Chicago. LaBier is the frontman for the electro-pop band Psychobuildings, who have released music through the Brooklyn based label All Hands Electric. He recently directed a music video for the band MNDR’s song, “Feed Me Diamonds.”
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents two exhibitions- Julian Bell: Paintings and Eleanor Ray: Paintings.
In the front gallery, are paintings by the British art historian and painter Julian Bell (grandson of the Bloomsbury group painter Vanessa Bell.) Well known in England for his art criticism, Bell is also a painter of considerable gifts. This is the first time his paintings have been shown in New York in over 30 years.
Based in East Sussex, England, Bell is a frequent contributor to the New York Review of Books and the London Review of Books, and author of the critically acclaimed What is Painting? and Mirror of the World: A New History of Art. He has shown extensively with Francis Kyle Gallery in London and has work in the collections of the Brighton Museum and the Museum of London. This exhibition provides a unique opportunity to consider the relationship between Bell’s critical writing and his art. Bell will be giving a concurrent talk After the End of Art (and Q & A led by writer David Carrier) at the New York Studio School on February 19th.
Bell paints both scenes form daily life- shoppers caught amongst glossy magazine racks or the base of a modern building and perplexing fictional scenarios such as a poet’s theatre troupe outside Skotoprigonyevsk, Dostoyevsky’s fictional home of the Karamazov clan, or a man climbing a scaffold on the edge of a town in Uzbekistan. The experience of looking at his painting is akin to stepping inside a fiction that has already begun. Bell’s work unfolds in strange details like a short story whose narrative is never quite grasped. As Bell puts it, “I embrace the currents of narrative and invite them to course through my canvases. Why turn your back on storytelling when it's the mainstream of human self-understanding?” The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog with a text by art historian David Carrier.
In the rear gallery, SHFAP presents recent work by twenty-five year old painter Eleanor Ray. A recent graduate of the New York Studio School MFA program, this is her first solo exhibition in a New York gallery. Ray’s small paintings play with the tropes of painterly representation. Derived from photography and from life, they carry a force and luminosity that extends beyond their small scale. Her poetic depictions of snowy tennis courts and sparse interiors suggest space that is both intimate and expansive. Ray’s sensitive and sensual brushwork is exquisitely scaled to her pictures’ dimension. There is a voyeuristic, at times nostalgic, sensibility to her work – we feel as though we are peering out of a window or through a doorway into a place we already know.
8 + 8
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents 8 + 8, a two-gallery survey of Paul Resika’s painting, featuring eight works that span eight decades of Resika’s career, beginning in the 1940s and continuing up to the present. Connected to personalities as diverse as Hans Hofmann, Edward Hopper, Leo Castelli, Milton Resnick and Clement Greenberg, his career stands as a veritable roadmap for the diversity of the New York art world over the past seventy years.
This condensed ‘microspective’ includes an essential work from distinct stylistic phases in Resika’s career, highlighting his painterly breadth and reflecting his own attempt to capture what is essential in his subjects. This exhibition is concurrent with an exhibition of eight new Resika paintings at Lori Bookstein Fine Art.
Resika (b. 1928) combines loose New York School painting and representational depiction with a singular boldness and poetic specificity. He negotiates the terrain between past and present, memory and observation, abstraction and representation.
Against the backdrop of the trends of pop and minimalism that swept the New York art world, Resika remained a truly independent figure, unafraid to follow his paintings wherever they took him. His career took dramatic and surprising twists.
Born in New York City, Resika studied with Hans Hofmann as a teenager and had his first solo show at age 19 at George Dix Gallery in New York. Seeking the traditional tools that Hofmann had received, such as training in perspective and anatomy, Resika travelled throughout Europe during the 1950s – 60s, studying 19th century landscape and old master painting. Upon returning to America, he introduced painting outdoors into his practice.
In the 1980s, Resika discovered a new motif in Provincetown – the squat rectangular pier buildings on the seafront. Yet after years of plein air painting, Resika no longer paints these seaside scenes from life; instead he generates metonymic symbols for his trees, boats and people. Resika’s recent painting calls to mind the concept of ‘pittura metafisica’ or what the Italian painter Carlo Carrà termed ‘painting without adjectives.’ The emptiness of the architecture in Resika’s pictures is reminiscent of the way De Chirico orchestrates elements in space.
Resika once said that his paintings were never “of something; rather they are something – paintings that have their own very independent existence from the landscape they imagine.”
Resika currently splits his time between New York City and Cape Cod. He has had a profound impact on younger generations of painters as both an artist and teacher, serving as chair of Parson’s MFA program from 1978-1990. Resika has exhibited at the National Academy of Design; the Museum of Modern Art; the Smithsonian Institute; and the Art Institute of Chicago. He has received numerous grants and awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship and election to the National Academy of Design.
Please contact the gallery at 917-861-7312 or firstname.lastname@example.org for further information or jpegs. A color catalog with essays by Jennifer Samet, PhD and Steven Harvey will be published for the exhibition.
a group exhibition organized with Marshall Price
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents From Life, a group exhibition organized with Marshall Price, curator at the National Academy of Art, featuring eleven paintings by artists who work from life as a central part of their practice. The artists in this exhibition construct observed spaces that investigate the complex relationship between perception, representation and time. As Marshall Price puts it, these artists collectively “illustrate that painting and drawing from direct observation remains a vital and vibrant part of artistic practice across several generations.”
Sangram Majumdar’s painting of a cut paper collage plays with the idea of painting a flat surface in a way that relates to Lois Dodd’s shadow silhouette of the painter at work.
Susanna Coffey’s closely rendered New Guinea yam cult mask confronts the viewer with the intensity of a face-to-face encounter, expanding upon her body of dramatic self-portraiture.
Sylvia Plimack Mangold established her vocabulary of observational realism in the 1960s in relation to concurrent thinking in minimalism and conceptualism. Plimack Mangold’s method of marking space with her depictions of rulers and masking tape on wood floors has influenced the subsequent work of Gideon Bok. Bok records the flow of people and objects in his studio. The environments he constructs are dense and expansive- layers of translucent paint enable the history of the painted surface to evolve in real time.
Catherine Murphy’s odd perspectives of daily life at first glance seem akin to photorealism, but are in fact the result of her obsessive observation of elaborately constructed and maintained set ups, involving people or household vignettes.
Like Bok, Cindy Tower’s paintings are saturated with visual stimuli. Situating herself in the midst of abandoned industrial interiors, she creates spaces that have an organic cartoon-like quality, as though at any moment her coils and wheels might spring to life.
Rackstraw Downes’s closely observed panoramic depictions of New York City and inland Texas push the envelope of painting from life. His use of perspective is thoroughly observational – rather than employing a rational conception of linear perspective, he structures his spaces with surprising horizon lines that bend in accordance with the human eye’s perception of space.
Stanley Lewis has similarly developed his own rigorous empirical system to painting the landscapes from observation. He works over prolonged periods of time building up thick impasto, almost enameled surfaces that he cuts up and pastes onto.
Lennart Anderson is a master of tone. His painting of a matchstick factory in Maine from the 1960s is structured with a subtle geometric poetry; the line of the river bank water and the diagonal of a conveyor belt align to create a subtle linear structure in the midst of a grey cloud-like atmosphere.
Anna Hostvedt’s precise paintings of parking lots feature subtle temperature shifts within an almost monochromatic palette. She creates spaces infused with a poetic detachment and a simultaneous flatness and depth.
Though the approaches these artists employ are diverse, they share a commitment to an intensity of looking and in the complexity of their processes each create paintings of diverse and profound dynamic range.
In the rear gallery, SHFAP presents an installation of pastels by renowned Icelandic/American artist Louisa Mathiasdottir (1917 – 2000). A student of Hans Hofmann in the 1940s, she is known for her bold, highly-saturated landscapes of Icelandic animals, still lifes and self-portraits. The pastels in this exhibition are dramatic tableaux of fruits, vegetables and kitchen implements. In 2007 her still lifes were exhibited at the Hafnarborg in Iceland, along with those of Leland Bell, who was her husband.
paintings by E.M. Saniga and Kurt Knobelsdorf
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Ernie and Kurt, an exhibition of recent paintings by the artists E.M Saniga (b.1946) and Kurt Knobelsdorf (b.1979). Saniga and Knobelsdorf met in 2003 via the residency Saniga sponsors with the Philadelphia Academy of Fine Arts, at his home in remote Lancaster County. Pennsylvania. The two painters became close friends and have subsequently painted outdoors together regularly. This exhibition explores the crossover influences within their respective oeuvres and the relationships between their Singular yet connected visions.
E.M. Saniga paints from observation and memory, creating a model of reality at once naturalistic and uncanny, analytical and poetic. Saniga studied with Seymour Remenick at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and privately under Bruce Kurland, His motifs are traditional yet paradoxically unfamiliar. Scenes of daily life around Lancaster County range from images of the surrounding landscape to animal carcasses and local dressage riders. His still lives are painted in closely valued tones. Even his beautiful images of flowers carry an undertone of death and decay.
Saniga is also a Distinguished Professor of Information Technology at the University of Delaware. Science and art share a common bond for him as exploratory processes without foregone conclusions. Through images such as the skinned mink or the woman fending off a snake, Saniga explores the fragility and singularity of his subjects' existence. As he puts it. painting is a way "to explain and to understand something that is real."
Kurt Knobelsdorf paints from nature and photography, drawing imagery from his plein air paintings. found photos and the internet. Born in Grosse Point, Michigan, He grew up in the Gulf Coast of Florida and studied at Dunedin Fine Art Center and later at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.
Knobelsdorf's reinventions of American scenes, such as his googly-eyed nude hitchhiker, describe an alternative American reality. Like the information captured on a surveillance screen. Knoobelsdorf's subjects are both intimate and anonymous. His snapshot-like depictions convey a loneliness that. as John Yau asserts, "is not personal but collective art, more disturbingly, ~ feels unavoidable." Yet for all this, Knobelsdor's distressed densely worked surfaces retain a startling freshness.
Concurrently. SHFAP presents in the rear gallery a small group of paintings by Bruce Kurland (b. 1938). Kurland is a painter of birds, fruits, flowers, game and modem debris. His still life paintings are connected to the American trompe l'oell tradition of artists such as John F. Peto. His uncannily balanced compositions are imbued w~h a glistening light and timeless atmosphere. Born in New York, Kurland studied at the National Academy of Design and the Art Student's league. His work has not been exhibited in New York for years.
There will be a reception for the exhibition on Thurs Oct 11th from 6· 8 pm. Contact Stephanie Ard at email@example.com or 917-861-7312 for image requests or further information.
Crosses and Bowl, 2010
oil on canvas, 48 x 62 inches
It’s Best Not to Annoy God
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents It’s Best Not to Annoy God, a solo exhibition of paintings, watercolors, and collages on paper by the visionary figurative artist Chuck Bowdish (b. 1959).
Bowdish renders the personal as universal, synthesizing childhood memory, history and classical imagery to create surreal works that merge autobiography and fantasy. He combines sophisticated draftsmanship and rich art historical references with the primeval fixations of outsider art – like a mixture of Picasso and Henry Darger. Bowdish develops imagery from what he describes as “the logic of dreams” and the hazy fragments of memory, exploring themes of innocence, loss, violence and sexuality.
Bowdish weaves a personal cosmology that tells the story of his mythic fall from grace and the battle between good and evil. His images are populated with symbols of innocence (women, children and angels) and evil (mobsters, soldiers and FBI agents in overcoats and hats). Many of Bowdish’s reoccurring motifs, such as the Trojan horse, the bowl of fruit, the factory smokestack, and looming mobsters reference difficult experiences in his childhood and his struggle with mental illness.
Born in Ohio, Bowdish’s early life was a nomadic one due to his father’s military service. Upon moving to New York as a young man, he worked as an illustrator for the New York Times and Fortune magazine and studied at The New York Studio School and The New York Academy of Art. He is the subject of a documentary film by Peter Wareing entitled Chuck Bowdish: Painter and has been included in recent exhibitions in Atlanta, Williamsburg and Long Island City.
Bowdish’s work speaks to a range of contemporary figuration (Daniel Richter’s theatrical spectacles, Jean-Michel Basquiat’s collages), yet the classical virtuosity of his draftsmanship and his painterly iconography link him to Courbet, Balthus, Giorgio De Chirico and neo-classical period Picasso as well.
Bowdish’s collages juxtapose monochrome ink drawings with hand-written dream fragments and quotes by political figures such as JFK. He assembles his cast of characters on a reoccurring vast and isolated landscape, reminiscent of the American frontier, lending his collages a comic book-like ethos. It is as though, by piecing together the symbols of the past, he integrates his fragmented personal history and recasts it within a mythic global-political context.
Concurrently, SHFAP presents in the rear gallery an installation of three paintings by Earl Kerkam (1891-1965.) These three related late paintings, drawn from the artist’s estate, are among Kerkam’s most abstract works. Dating from c.1960-63, his classic self-portrait/portrait bust format is rendered here as a vertical rectangular color composition.
Earl Kerkam was a figurative fellow traveler of the New York School abstract expressionists. He was admired by Pollock and Guston, and best friends with Franz Kline (with whom he shared a studio). During the forties and fifties, Kerkam was like a wandering mendicant painter moving back and forth between Paris and New York, studiously avoiding the limelight, while simultaneously exhibiting in progressive galleries such as Charles Egan, World House and Poindexter. After Kerkam's death, his friends (among them de Kooning, Guston and Rothko) petitioned the Museum of Modern Art to plan an exhibit in honor of the man who "in our eyes is one of the finest painters to come out of America.” Kerkam was the subject of a one man show at The Painting Center in 2011.
a group installation,
featuring works by seven artists:
The exhibition draws its name from a famous breakbeat hit by 70s funk outfit Graham Central Station.
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents The Jam, a group installation, featuring works by seven artists: Andrea Bergart, Matt Phillips, Meghan Brady, Tara Geer, Peter LaBier, Kyle Staver and Janice Nowinski. The exhibition draws its name from a famous breakbeat hit by 70s funk outfit Graham Central Station.
The Jam is designed as a total painted environment. A mural by Andrea Bergart and Matt Phillips, and a sound component by the chill-wave band Color War set the stage for an eclectic mixture: DIY geometric abstraction and figurative painting and works on paper.
This exhibition expands on SHFAP’s installation “Meta-Decorative” for the Scope Art Fair 2012 – where Andrea Bergart designed an abstract mural for the walls of the booth, inspired by Pendleton patterns, that was hung with contemporary paintings, works on paper and textiles all connected to a home-grown geometric tradition. Less homogeneous in its vision, The Jam is designed as a sprawling installation of hand made pattern with abstract and representational works on paper and paintings.
Andrea Bergart’s vibrant paintings are infused with an energetic rhythm reminiscent of West African textiles. Matt Phillips paints boldly colorful abstractions related to Gees Bend style quilting. Phillips has also previously collaborated with Meghan Brady, whose abstract images combine underlying geometric structure with spontaneous whimsy. All three artists studied at Boston University.
Tara Geer and Peter LaBier both dig into drawing as a medium. Geer’s large-scale charcoal drawings superficially recall Cy Twombly and Joan Mitchell. Geer gets so close to her subjects that they become abstract. Whether rendering a backpack or the center of an ice cube, Geer gives voice to the beauty and complexity in the commonplace and small. She also teaches drawing at Teacher’s College and privately. Geer will hold a drawing workshop in the gallery on Friday August 3rd at 2pm. Like Geer, LaBier pays careful attention to the every day. His colored ink drawings of bunches of flowers have a wiry intensity of line. LaBier is also the frontman for the Brooklyn band Psychobuildings.
Close friends and figurative painters, Kyle Staver and Janice Nowinski make work in conversation with the history of painting. Staver’s figurative compositions evoke the painterly touch of Matisse, Bonnard or David Park while their compositions quote earlier masters such as Titian. Her image of a boy on a rope swing in a dark wood reads like a mix of Dana Schutz and Elie Nadelman, simultaneously personal, humorous and mythic. Janice Nowinski’s paintings have a self-aware wit that can be seen in her transcriptions of historical works. Her transcription of Boucher’s reclining nude (included here) was a pivotal painting for her: “I came across the odalisque by Boucher…all of a sudden I realized what was missing from my work: a sense of humor and also the possibility that sex could be a great painting subject for me.”
Like both sides of a 45rpm single dividing a long song into two parts, The Jam is the extended funky breakdown that follows the more conventional stating of melodic themes on side 1 (side 1 being the Meta-Decorative installation at Scope). The Jam creates a dense pictorial space that layers painting and drawing over decorative painting.
Simultaneously with The Jam, SHFAP presents in the rear gallery a single important 1959 painting by the mystical American abstract painter Alfred Jensen (1903-1981). Born in Guatemala, Jensen was an early student of Hans Hofmann in Munich, and while he was a long-term friend of Mark Rothko, he remained a singular figure in the heyday of New York school Abstract Expressionism. He attempted to bring together human history in abstract painting. In search for a universal, spiritual geometry, Jensen combined complex numerical and linguistic systems in mysterious ways. The painting included here, “Quadri”, dates from the period of Jensen’s investigation into the Spanish Renaissance. It forsakes the artist’s alternating black and white checkerboards for diagonal patterning derived from Moorish geometric motifs.
“If I want to feel haunted, there's the Lower East Side.”
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Ten Tenements, a solo exhibition of Gandy Brodie’s (1925-1975) work based on the Lower East Side. The exhibition includes paintings and works on paper from 1958-1975 of tenement facades, city trees and related imagery – the landscape of Brodie’s youth.
This is the last exhibition that Brodie and his wife, Jocelyn, planned together before his premature death. She wrote in a letter to Meyer Schapiro’s widow Lillian, “Ten Tenements was Gandy’s idea for a show. Remember the mini-show I brought to you and Meyer of Tenement themes…and “The Happy Tenement,” the illustrated poem for children of all ages? …Gandy was a tenement before he became a tree (here in Vermont).”
Although the original intention was to pair Brodie’s representations of the Lower East Side with photographs of the walls and buildings that inspired them, this exhibition instead situates the paintings directly within the neighborhood that occasioned them.
Gandy Brodie was born in a “house on Henry Street”, blocks away from the gallery. Essentially a self taught artist, he was deeply impressed by the work of Van Gogh, Cézanne, Picasso, Klee, Soutine, and Mondrian, all of whom had an influence on his singular “expressionist” style. Brodie chose not to participate in the shifting trends that dominated the New York art scene, carving an independent path. He focused intensely on what was directly before him, striving to articulate the world as he observed it, “like a dream sequence,” as he once put it.
The Residue of Memory
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents an exhibition of recent paintings by Stuart Shils. The exhibition, “The Residue of Memory,” includes paintings based on architectural impressions of Tuscany and Rome, where Shils lived and taught last summer with the Jerusalem Studio School. The paintings have moved beyond literal depictions of cityscapes and buildings into more abstract, high-chroma compositions, also larger in scale than much of his previous work.
Shils has long been interested in the idea of seeing through screens or filters, and the blurring and abstracting that results. These paintings employ these ideas. Memory itself becomes the screen, so that we are left with just the impression or sensation of the place.
In these paintings, Shils seeks to represent windows into transitory feeling and mood, internal emotional resonances. The paintings reflect, in his words, “the intense sun, experiences with friends in the labyrinthine forms of those towns, the urgent and pungent presence of the past via architectural form…”
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents Nocturnes, a solo exhibition of paintings by Susanna Coffey. Coffey is well known for her ongoing series of self-portraits. She has simultaneously developed a practice of painting outdoors at night. These tiny nightscapes include images from Chicago, Connecticut, Prague and other places and date from 1995 to 2012. They are painted either in oil or acrylic, often on small canvas panels.
Jeremy Biles writing for the website New City Art, described how Coffey’s “…landscapes in oil are unpopulated, quiet, and diminutive, sometimes just the size of an index card. They carry all the emotion of her portraits but lack fore-grounded faces, and they also convey something at once more abstract and affecting.”
Susanna Coffey expresses her view of our world in the evening--when the sun goes down, but illumination does not cease. The depth of her palette evokes the aura of night—and the degree of darkness changes based on location. Coffey
Feb 23- March 18
with Andrea Belag, Ryan Cobourn, Arthur Dove, Bill Jensen, and Ellen Phelan
The paintings have in common an examination of the space and power that can be accessed within a close tonal range. This subtle range has been explored by New York School painters such as Reinhardt, Rothko and Still. Dark Matters presents a multi-generational group of painters who have utilized the darker chromatic spectrum to explore various expressive interests. These dark paintings represent just one aspect of the artists’ work at large, and, in many cases, have not previously been exhibited.
February 23- March 18, 2012
Jan 12- Feb 19, opening Jan 13 6-8
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents our second solo exhibition of paintings by Sangram Majumdar. Born in 1976 in Calcutta, Majumdar is an image-based painter who received his BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and his MFA from Indiana University and is currently on the faculty at Maryland Institute College of Art.
NOVEMBER 30 – JANUARY 8, 2012
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects and Martha Henry, Inc. present Bob Thompson Drawings an exhibition of drawings by Bob Thompson (1937-1966) that date from the late 1950s to the mid 1960s and includes Thompson’s last known work, a large drawing in oil paint on canvas after Titian.
October 20 – November 20, 2011
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents an exhibition of three painters entitled The Gap, featuring the work of Kurt Knobelsdorf, Sangram Majumdar and Stuart Shils. The exhibition explores the increasingly multi-layered and complex relationship that all three painters have to the practice of working from life. In a recent catalog essay Majumdar wrote:
“More and more, I find myself using the facture of paint as a technical parallel to explore the fractured nature of how we experience our lives, and imagery as a whole. We seem to ‘know’ things before we touch them, befriend’ people and have extensive conversations before we ever meet them in person. My work is about this gap between what we think we know and what is right in front of us.”Lester Johnson:
October 20 – November 20, 2011
Concurrently with The Gap, SHFAP presents Lester Johnson: Last Paintings. Completed a few months before his death, Johnson’s two last paintings depict himself and his wife from an earlier moment in their lives. Without artifice, working from love and memory, Johnson paints an affecting coda to his lengthy career as the pre-eminent American figurative expressionist painter
September 7 – October 8, 2011
Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects presents an installation of new paintings by Gideon Bok entitled Record Store. This is the first exhibition at SHFAP’s new location in the Lower East Side, at 208 Forsyth Street. The exhibition includes more than one hundred of Bok’s “LP still life paintings”: 12 5/8 x 12 5/8 inch oil paintings of record album covers.
paintings & works on paper
June 2 – July 1, 2011
Shfap presents Bill Rice: Paintings & Works on Paper from June 2 - July 1, 2011. The exhibition will include a selection of works spanning the course of Rice’s career, mostly gathered from the artist’s estate. This is the first solo exhibition of Rice’s work since 2005. A catalogue with essays by Joe Fyfe and Ulla Dydo will accompany the exhibition. The exhibition will include a compilation of film clips featuring Rice, put together by Jacob Burckhardt.
April 2 – April 31, 2011
Pink Moon, a group exhibition inspired by the final album of the English folksinger Nick Drake (1948-1974.) The exhibition includes paintings by Gideon Bok, Duncan Hannah, Kurt Knobelsdorf, Sangram Majumdar, Keith Morris, Stephanie Pierce and Stuart Shils, sculpture by Paul Villinski, music by D.M. Stith and Arborea and film by Chris Wilcha.
SHFAP and Martha Henry presentGandy Brodie/Bob Thompson:
Pairings, "The Ecstasy of Influence"
an exhibition about the painterly relationship of Gandy Brodie and Bob Thompson in the late 1950’s.
February 1 - 28, 2011
reception 6-8pm, February 1, 2011
shfap, 24 east 73rd Street, #2F, NYC, NY 10021, firstname.lastname@example.org
Gandy Brodie and Bob Thompson both spent the summer of 1958 in Provincetown, Massachusetts, amidst a community of other artists that included Mimi Gross, Red Grooms, Jay Milder, Wolf Kahn, Emilio Cruz, Lester Johnson, Anne Tabachnick, Dody Müller and Christopher Lane.
Art historian Judith Wilson has characterized that Provincetown summer as exemplifying an “ecstasy of influence”: the influences of contemporary figurative painters on Thompson’s work. She wrote about this community in the 1998 Whitney Museum exhibition catalogue for Thompson’s retrospective. Despite the fact that they never met, Jan Müller who died in January of 1958 was unquestionably a significant influence on the developing Bob Thompson. However, the influences of other members of this community on Thompson have been less explored. Wilson touches on this as she quotes a mutual friend of Brodie and Thompson, the painter Emilio Cruz. Cruz has stated that Thompson painted “his first figurative paintings” in response to the influence of Gandy Brodie.
table #Z23, 2nd flr
NY ARTBOOK FAIR
22-25 Jackson Ave
at the intersection of 46th Ave
Long Island City, NY 11101
Friday/Saturday, November 5-6, 2010, 11am - 7pm
Sunday, November 7, 2010, 11am- 5pm
The NY Art Book Fair is FREE and open to the public.
steven harvey fine arts projects presents its second solo exhibition of oil-on-panel paintings by the enigmatic Pennsylvania-based painter of rural and industrial landscapes, still lifes, figures and animals, E. M. Saniga. Having grown up hunting and fishing in a country setting, Saniga is a keen observer of nature. His atmospheric paintings capture the cycle of beauty in nature that ultimately leads to death and decay.
Coleman Bancroft – 35 e 67 st, 4th flr, nyc 10065
Gallery Schlesinger- 24 e 73 st. #2F, nyc 10021
May 18-June 13, 2010, opening Thursday May 20th, at Gallery Schesinger 4-6pm
and at Coleman Bancroft 6-8pm, gallery hrs: 11-6 tues-fri, 11-5 sat
Organized with John Yau
visit the exhibition