This is what it’s like at the end of the day./But soon the day will go away./Sunlight preoccupies the cross street./It and night soon will meet./Meanwhile, there is Central Park./Now the park is getting dark. – Frederick Seidel
Skarstedt will present Nice Weather, an exhibition of paintings curated by David Salle, at both its Upper East Side (20 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10075, t: 212.737.2060, f: 212.737.4171, firstname.lastname@example.org @skarstedtgallery) and Chelsea (550 West 21st Street, New York, NY 10011, t: 212.994.5200, f: 212.994.5212 email@example.com ) locations. Inspired by the title of Frederick Seidel’s poem, this exhibition brings together some of the strongest painters of the present day. Spanning two galleries, Nice Weather hosts a platform for conversation within a multigenerational group of artists, ranging in age from their twenties to their seventies, many of whom will be seen together for the first time.
Nice Weather includes Richard Aldrich, Joe Bradley, Cecily Brown, George Condo, Martha Diamond, Lucy Dodd, Carroll Dunham, Louise Fishman, Rashid Johnson, Alex Katz, Shawn Kuruneru, Chris Martin, Albert Oehlen, Sterling Ruby, David Salle, Dana Schutz, Amy Sillman, Gary Stephan, Blair Thurman, Patricia Treib, Rosemarie Trockel, Piotr Uklański, Charline von Heyl, Mary Weatherford, Stanley Whitney, Terry Winters, and others.
Each work is concerned, to one degree or another, with the basic properties of painting: size, scale, surface, shape, color and gesture. Some of the paintings are also concerned with imagery, with how it can be presented and integrated with pure painting, but none of these artists are realists per se. Overall, there is an emphasis on structure and materiality. Many of the works are declarative; they make an immediate impact. Some are visually blunt; others are more lyrical. All have a strong sense of painting’s internal energy.
A few of the artists are not “painters” in the strict sense, but their inclusion here makes visual and material sense. The show communicates an aesthetic, which while difficult to name, examines the role of gesture, in all senses of that term, in painting. Whatever differences in starting premise or choice of media, the show examines how paintings talk to each other across stylistic orthodoxies – how they connect beneath the surface. Employing a variety of strategies, these works achieve a result that is neither exclusively figurative nor completely abstract, one that expresses an immediacy and engagement with materiality.
Although the painters here work toward different objectives, a point of intersection is an interest in making an “open” type painting, one in which more or less anything – including nothing at all – can happen, and does. These artists share a lack of dogma; their work is aware of, but not in the least constricted by, canons of the past. Embracing an overall “constructed”, or constructivist, approach, they generate a fresh image: not an image of the world, but a new image on its own terms. This exhibition does not attempt to be encyclopedic or all-inclusive of the best painters today; the show is a small sampling of the painters working now. The selection brings together painters whose work represents a fresh mind-set; they share some original quality – one without a name. The show affords an opportunity to see that this attitude is something realized by a diverse group of painters, with widely divergent points of origin.
Skarstedt Gallery was founded in 1994 by Per Skarstedt to mount historical exhibitions by Contemporary European and American artists that had become the core of his specialty in Sweden and New York in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. The New York gallery’s program remains focused on artists of the late Twentieth Century whose work explores concepts such as representation, authorship, identity and sexual politics across a wide-range of media. Skarstedt’s unique relationships with artists allows it to present exhibitions both on the primary and secondary markets, creating a dialogue between the generations.
Skarstedt opened its London space at 23 Old Bond Street in 2012 with the inaugural exhibition “Andy Warhol: The American Indian.” Skarstedt London presents exhibitions and publications devoted to the gallery’s established area of expertise while also seeking to evolve and expand its focus and is committed to sharing both its aesthetic perspective and philosophical approach through high-quality exhibitions and collaborations with top international museums and private collections.
Skarstedt opened its Chelsea space at 550 W. 21st Street in May 2014 with the inaugural exhibition “Klein and Warhol: Fire and Oxidation Paintings.” The additional gallery space enables Skarstedt to expand on its core program of museum-quality, historically researched exhibitions from modern and contemporary masters.