When Clement Greenberg, Frank Stella, and Donald Judd tried to define what makes a painting, they overlooked a central feature — capaciousness.
Heilmann’s paintings gleefully haunt those artworks which make claims on purity, autonomy, or clarity.
I made the bold decision to venture into the NY Art Book Fair presented by Printed Matter at MoMA PS1. There were throngs of people examining books, chatting about books, buying books, and having books thrust upon them.
LONDON — When I first walked into the Whitechapel Gallery, I thought I was looking at a Barnett Newman zip painting on the far wall.
This two-gallery extravaganza takes up the tricky gambit of featuring “artists whose work involves a methodical and controlled process of creating seemingly freeform or random daubs and spots.”
When I first wrote about Mary Heilmann for Artforum (January 1987), one thing I had in mind was the strong impression that her first great painting, “Save the Last Dance for Me” (1979), had made on me some years earlier, when I saw it at the Holly Solomon Gallery.
Frieze New York opens its doors to the public today, but already during yesterday’s press and VIP preview the aisles were crowded, the common areas and restaurants filled with worn-out fairgoers, and it seemed as if the only empty seats were sculptures.
For his solo show at Pace Gallery in 2010, Thomas Nozkowski made the decision to hang his work in pairs, with an oil painting on canvas board or panel alongside a related work on paper, setting up a contrast between density and light, slow and fast, rumination and riff. This comparison came to mind repeatedly while wandering through Paintings on Paper, the effervescent summer exhibition at David Zwirner.
The Age of Small Things, a group show organized by the painter Chuck Webster, fills the ground floor of the Lower East Side’s Dodge Gallery, where the singular touch of the artist-curator has recast a parade of diminutive objects into an unpredictable unfolding of processes and ideas.
With summer almost upon us, we note the arrival on these shores of Mary Heilmann: Good Vibrations, published last year by Walther König, Cologne, to accompany the artist’s reception of the prestigious Biennial Award for Contemporary Art (BACA) and its related exhibition.
I visited Mary Heilmann recently in her Bridgehampton studio. At the end of our time together, she took a small painting of a wave, and turned it upside-down. It was the perfect gesture to sum up our conversation and the themes of her work — an offhand reminder of its yin-yang quality. Heilmann’s work plays with big ideas, but it does so playfully.
As part of the Festival of Ideas For the New City anchored by the New Museum, a group of major artists have sprinkled the Bowery with murals. In collaboration with the Art Production Fund, painters including Mary Heilmann, Richard Prince and Jacqueline Humphries created murals for the roll-down metal gates of restaurant supply stores on the historic street. The trick is that these murals are only visible at night, after the stores close. Over the course of one evening’s sunset, I went on a scouting mission to photograph the works in their native habitat. Click through for the photo essay.