Tag Archives: David Zwirner Books

CHARLES GAINES IN CONVERSATION

When I went to graduate school in the 1960s… I was faced with a dilemma… I was surrounded by ideas about art that I couldn’t identify with. I couldn’t identify with the practice of trying to decide what to put in a painting using a kind of intuition. Or looking at a painting as a vehicle for self-expression. It’s not that I looked down on that, or that I thought it was such a bad idea. It’s just that I wasn’t working in a manner that required that kind of behavior… Then I ran into a person who told me about a couple of books, which I bought and read. One was by the art historian Henri Focillon [1881–1943], called The Life of Forms in Art [1934]. The other was a big picture book on Tantric Buddhist art by Ajit Mookerjee [1915–1990]. In those books I began to find things that made sense to me in terms of art production.

[Focillon] had a Platonic perspective, that form was synonymous with number, with mathematics, with structure. And he said that form had a life of its own, had its own reciprocal fitness, had its own autonomous exigency..

This sounds like the tenets of high modernism. I don’t think it followed those tenets in talking about some kind of tautology or self-referential or self-reflexive apparatus. I saw it as a general critique of expressionism, which was central to my problem. I didn’t feel connected with the objects I was making, because when I made them, I wasn’t convinced that there was any connection between my motive to make something and the thing that I made. It just seemed arbitrary to me. I would see painters laboring in front of a painting, trying to decide whether a corner should be red or blue. To me it didn’t make any difference. It could be red or blue, you know? How can they feel good about a judgment that they make? On what basis do they establish this connection? And for the life of me, I couldn’t figure it out.

Focillon gave me the idea that you’re ultimately not the author of the object. You’re more like a vehicle of this realization without an author. With Tantric art I saw visual representation of the same idea.Charles Gaines*

This weekend—in conjunction with his Hauser & Wirth exhibition CHARLES GAINES—PALM TREES AND OTHER WORKS—join Gaines in conversation with Thelma Golden, Laura Owens, and Gary Simmons.

ARTIST TALK—CHARLES GAINES IN CONVERSATION with THELMA GOLDEN, LAURA OWENS, and GARY SIMMONS

Sunday, November 3, at 3 pm.

Hauser & Wirth

901 East 3rd Street, downtown Los Angeles.

“Charles Gaines, January 31, 1995,” in ArtCenter Talks: Graduate Seminar, The First Decade 1986–1995, edited by Stan Douglas (New York: David Zwirner Books / Pasadena, CA: ArtCenter Graduate Press, 2016), 172–197.

See Gina Osterloh on Gaines’ Shadows series.

Charles Gaines—Palm Trees and Other Works, Hauser & Wirth, Los Angeles, September 14, 2019–January 5, 2020, photographs by Fredrik Nilsen. Images courtesy and © the artist, the photographer, and Hauser & Wirth.

ALICE NEEL — FREEDOM

Two years after Alice Neel, Uptown, David Zwirner presents ALICE NEEL—FREEDOM, another great exhibition of the painter’s work, this time focused on Neel’s portrayal of the nude figure.

The show’s catalogue features contributions by Marlene Dumas, Helen Molesworth, and Ginny Neel, Alice’s daughter-in-law and the organizer of FREEDOM.

ALICE NEEL—FREEDOM

Through April 13.

David Zwirner

537 West 20th Street, New York City.

From top: Alice Neel, Pregnant Julie and Algis, 1967; Alice Neel, Degenerate Madonna, 1930; Alice Neel, Untitled (Alice Neel and John Rothschild in the Bathroom), 1935; Alice Neel, Bronx Bacchus, 1929; Alice Neel, Joe Gould, 1933. All artwork © The Estate of Alice Neel, courtesy The Estate of Alice Neel and David Zwirner.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL

“Dinner with Paul Cadmus in the Village. He showed me a hundred drawings or more; the nakedest and least disinterested are the best, particularly those of Jared French. Until lately they have shared this apartment, an oddly un-American interior; good shabby antiques; a quantity of books and music, charming evidence of self-education. Late in the evening a youth named Lloyd Goff, who was Paul’s assistant, wandered in, at his ease, sleepy, perhaps tipsy. Soon he threw himself on the couch and fell asleep… Paul and I talked and talked, reminiscence and theory, in that particular mood of ours, or of his: smiling relaxation, solemn boyish idealism, who knows what else…

“Goff then woke up and undertook to say goodnight, but the next thing I knew, there he lay again, sprawled face down on another couch, his clothes all drawn on the bias and tight upon his very fine little back and buttocks. At last I gave up whatever impulse it was that had kept me so late. Paul fondly accompanied me to the subway. Perhaps, he said, he would make a drawing or two before he went to bed; our talk had been so stimulating, and a sleeping model suits him…” — Glenway Westcott, 1937*

Falling between last year’s Nick Mauss: Transmissions at the Whitney and next month’s Lincoln Kirstein’s Modern at MOMA, THE YOUNG AND EVIL—curated by Jarrett Earnest at David Zwirner—looks at the between-the-wars Neorealist-Romantic circles around the artists Jared French, his lover Paul Cadmus, his wife Margaret Hoening French (collectively known as PaJaMa), Cadmus’ sister Fidelma—who was married to Kirstein—Bernard Perlin, Pavel Tchelitchew, George Tooker, and Jensen Yow.

Taking its title from the 1933 collaborative novel by art critic Parker Tyler and poet Charles Henri Ford (Tchelitchew’s lover), the exhbition features never-before-exhibited photographs—many from the Kinsey Institute—rarely seen major paintings, sculptures, drawings, and ephemera of this American Bloomsbury, which included Katherine Anne Porter and the ménage à trois of writer Glenway Westcott, publisher Monroe Wheeler, and George Platt Lynes, who photographed (and often modeled for) them all.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL exhibition catalogue will be published later this year by David Zwirner Books, featuring new scholarship by Ann Reynolds and Kenneth E. Silver.

THE YOUNG AND EVIL

Through April 13.

David Zwirner

533 West 19th Street, New York City.

*Continual Lessons: The Journals of Glenway Westcott, 1937–1955, edited by Robert Phelps with Jerry Rosco (New York: Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1990), 8–9.

Also see: By With To & From: A Lincoln Kirstein Reader, edited by Nicholas Jenkins (New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1991).

From top: Paul Cadmus, Stone Blossom: A Conversation Piece, 1939–1940, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Juliana Cheyney Edwards Collection and Seth K. Sweetser Fund, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY; Paul Cadmus, Monroe Wheeler, 1938, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY; Jared French, Murder, 1942, courtesy the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, John D. Phillips Fund; Fidelma Cadmus Kirstein, Two Women, circa 1930–1939; Pavel Tchelitchew, Portrait, 1935; Pavel Tchelitchew, The Lion Boy, 1936–1937, private collection, New Jersey; Pavel Tchelitchew, George Platt Lynes, circa 1937–1942; Paul Cadmus, Shore Leave, 1933, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, gift of Malcolm S. Forbes, © 2019 Estate of Paul Cadmus / Artists Rights Society (ARS), NY.

BOOKED — HONG KONG ART BOOK FAIR

New Documents (Los Angeles), onestar / Three Star (Paris), Printed Matter (New York), David Zwirner Books (New York), Art Metropole (Toronto), Sternberg Press (Berlin), and Roma Publications (Amsterdam) will join dozens of Asian publishers and artists at the inaugural BOOKED—TAI KWUN CONTEMPORARY’S ART BOOK FAIR in Hong Kong.

Talks, workshops, launches, and performances will take place throughout the event’s duration, and the fair will close with a set by DJ Freckles.

BOOKED—TAI KWUN CONTEMPORARY’S ART BOOK FAIR

Friday through Sunday, January 11, 12, and 13.

JC Contemporary, Tai Kwun

10 Hollywood Road, Central, Hong Kong.

From top:

Kara Walker, MCMXCIX [sketches from 1999] (Amsterdam: Roma Publications, 2017).

Jumana Manna, A Small Big Thing (Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2018)

Maria Fusco, Give Up Art (Los Angeles: New Documents, 2017).

Phile: The International Journal of Desire and Curiosity 2 (2018), Art Metropole.

Wolfgang Tillmans, DZHK Book 2018 (New York: David Zwirner Books, 2018).

Stefan Brüggemann, Timeless (Paris: Onestar, 2015).

RALPH LEMON AT ART CENTER

“For Ralph Lemon, evasion and erasure are counterintuitive; they mark history’s traces and court the past’s return. History—with its discrete epochs, nameable masses, and willful actors—is neither salve nor refuge for those who lie beyond its rules.” — Thomas J. Lax, “For Starters”

Artforum editor-in-chief David Velasco will present the choreographer, dancer, writer, and visual artist Ralph Lemon in the last of this year’s graduate art seminars at ArtCenter.

DAVID VELASCO PRESENTS RALPH LEMON

Tuesday, December 11, at 8 pm.

LA Times Media Center, ArtCenter College of Design

Hillside Campus, 1700 Lida Street, Pasadena.

See ArtCenter Talks: Graduate Seminar, The First Decade 1986–1995, Stan Douglas, ed. (New York: David Zwirner Books/Pasadena, CA: ArtCenter Graduate Press, 2016).

Ralph Lemon and Okwui Okpokwasili perform Untitled (2008) at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Image credit: MOMA.