Art Miami 2018 Booth AM517 12.04.2018 - 12.09.2018
George Condo Untitled, 1985 Oil on canvas 13 x 10 in 33.02 x 25.40 cm
George Condo Untitled, 1985 Painted during the early years of his involvement in New York’s East Village art scene, Condo’s Untitled exemplifies his interest in creating a hybrid sensibility, where references to Old Master paintings are blended with contemporary images. Describing his approach as “psychological Cubism”, Condo was motivated by his own deep-seated desire to internalize the fundamental principles behind the works of artists that he held in high esteem. Stating that “The only way for me to feel the difference between every other artist and me is to use every artist to become me”, Condo re-worked these influences into portraits that visually oscillate between the old and the new. Untitled is a portrait that would strike one as belonging to a different era; here, the figure dons a hat and suit that evoke another time. By incorporating these styles in contemporary painting, this work serves as an example of the humor, pastiche, and theatricality that are the hallmarks of Condo’s work. In this way, Untitled expresses Condo’s imaginative interpretation of the human figure.
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George Condo Study for Incomprehensible Dream I, 2003 Pencil on paper 12 5/8h x 9 1/2w in 32.07h x 24.13w cm
George Condo Study for Incomprehensible Dream I, 2003 Study for Incomprehensible Dream I (2003) was exhibited in the Salzburg Museum der Moderne’s survey exhibition of the artist’s career, entitled “One Hundred Women”, in 2005. Women feature heavily in many of Condo’s works; here, the woman sits in center-stage, seemingly in the grip-like embrace of an unknown, hidden figure behind her. The enigmatic subject matter is heightened by Condo’s use of chiaroscuro; curator Ralph Rugoff writes that “in a number of pictures, amorphously defined background areas of darkness or light seem to define or respond to a figure’s psychic orientation”. This drawing exemplifies this approach in Condo’s work; by paying particular attention to shading particular parts of the figure, the woman becomes the centerpiece through which a sense of mystery, foreboding, or even menace is promulgated.
833 Madison Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10021 Phone: +1 (646) 724 9580 | E-mail: info@HelwaserGallery.com www.HelwaserGallery.com
George Condo Nude with Towel, 2007 Pencil on paper 12 x 22 1/2 in 30.48 x 57.15 cm
George Condo Nude with Towel, 2007 Nude with Towel (2007) depicts a kneeling woman with a necklace around her throat, her hands clasping a towel that winds around her calf. Wide-eyed, the woman’s gaze is directed towards the viewer. The image underscores the centrality of the figure to Condo’s practice; the nude’s pose, gaze, and accompanying props all hint at a stage-like setting that demonstrates the themes of artifice and theatricality that underpin his practice. Condo reserves the most detail for the nude’s face, highlighting her beauty, expression, and the slight tilt of her head. The work marvelously emphasizes the artist’s ability to spark our imagination through his own unique visual vocabulary, leaving us to imagine the story the story that is being told through the figure of the nude. A prolific painter known for his distinctive portraits, George Condo reportedly remarked, “Drawing is visual thinking... What do you do for the whole day, wait for the paint to dry?” Over the course of his three decade career, Condo has produced a significant body of drawings that accompany his celebrated oil paintings. Scholar and writer Margrit Brehm noted that the artist himself attributed great importance to his drawings, which serve as an alternative window into his practice, and reveal developments in subject matter, composition, and form. According to Brehm, they represent a “pictorial cosmos which is more diverse and subversive than the paintings would have us assume.”
833 Madison Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10021 Phone: +1 (646) 724 9580 | E-mail: info@HelwaserGallery.com www.HelwaserGallery.com
George Condo Constructed Female Figure, 1989 Oil on canvas 50h x 40w in 127h x 101.60w cm
George Condo Constructed Female Figure, 1989 Against an expansive green background, a towering figure made up of various shapes and hues, stands tall and imposing.
Constructed Female Figure (1989) exemplifies Condo’s “imaginary portraiture”, where human-like characters carry “ambiguous pictorial identities” and remain intriguingly enigmatic. The title of the work and the amorphous outline of arms, legs, body and head offer viewers with limited clues as to what they may be looking at. Neither object nor human, the obscure figure portrayed in this work evokes one of Condo’s trademark; described by the artist as complex, diverse psychological beings mirroring the absurdity of ordinary life. Painted in 1989, the piece displayed here emphasizes the artist’s central theme of imaginative portraiture explored in the 1980s. The deep colors, confident execution, and obscure subject material give Constructed Female Figure a picturesque and attractive quality.
Helen Frankenthaler Untitled, 1970 Acrylic on paper 11 x 20 1/2 in 27.94 x 52.07 cm
Helen Frankenthaler Untitled, 1970 Best-known for her influence on Abstract Expressionism, Helen Frankenthaler played a crucial role in the revival of drawing. Paper remained one of her favorite mediums to execute her paintings on; at times throughout her career, Frankenthaler chose to work solely with paper, particularly during the 1970s, and the last decade of her life.
Untitled (1970) reminds us what would become the artistâ€™s mature style: thin washes of color soaked into the paper spreading without restriction. Together with her contemporaries, Morris Louis and Kenneth Noland, Frankenthaler is credited for further developing Color Field Painting. Here, the acrylic on paper provides both the immediacy of the process and the visual quality of pure hues. Described as an artist that could â€œcontradict the rules of conventional compositions and still make a painting workâ€?, Frankenthaler established her position as an innovator in the 1970s. She was also a notable mentor for female artists, and contributed to essential shifts between Modern art and conceptual non-object art practice.
Joan Mitchell Tree, c.1967 Water-soluble wax crayon and wash on paper 14 1/2 x 9 1/8 in 36.83 x 23.18 cm
Joan Mitchell Tree, c. 1967 While rooted in the conventions of abstraction, Mitchell’s inventive reinterpretation of the traditional figure-ground relationship and synesthetic use of color set her apart from her peers, resulting in intuitively constructed and emotionally charged compositions that alternately conjure individuals, observations, places, and points in time. Her prodigious oeuvre encompasses not only the large-scale abstract canvases for which she is best known, but also smaller paintings, drawings, and prints. Mitchell made pastel drawings at various times throughout her career, which, as John Yau notes, both relate to and differ from her work on canvas: “Mitchell’s use of pastel sets her apart from older artists such as Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline, and from her peers, Sam Francis, Cy Twombly, and Al Held. Crumbly and sensitive to pressure, it seems an unlikely medium for a painter who was known for her vigorous, slashing brushstrokes and lush surfaces. But, in Mitchell’s hands, pastel becomes an instrument of unruly precision and opposing hues. In her works on paper, with their swift, tenacious lines, scumbled fields, decisive layering, and optical collisions, the viewer has an intimate encounter with a sumptuous but harsh lyricism that constantly courts but never succumbs to chaos.”
John Wesley Bâ€™s Bed, 1973-4 Gouache on paper 21 x 26 in 53.34 x 66.04 cm
John Wesley B’s Bed, 1973 - 74 Completed between 1973-4, John Wesley’s B’s Bed appropriates the comic strip Blondie by Chic Young. While the classic characters of Dagwood and Blondie Bumstead are absent in this painting, Wesley’s distinctive palette and subject matter continue his exploration of the domestic landscape. Whereas the work combines tones of pastel blue and pink with variations of “grass” green, the compositional framework brings forth the artist’s recognized use of clear outlines, usually rendered in black. In B’s Bed, Wesley has swapped the black lines for a dark blue, which unifies the theme of the depicted bedroom. This culminates in the gradient of the headboard that centers the viewer’s focus on the bed. In Wesley’s many presentations of intimacy, this recurrent motif sets the stage for the artist’s narrative; depicting facets of private scenes that strike at the core of our most primal fears, joys, and desires.
Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, 1968 Ballpoint pen, watercolor and gouache on paper 17 x 14 in 43.18 x 35.56 cm
Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, 1968 Untitled (1968) was produced during a transitional period of the artist’s oeuvre. Known for going through many styles in his practice—from abstraction to figurative painting in the mid-1950s and back again to abstraction, the American painter was highly acclaimed for his Ocean Park paintings. Using ballpoint pen, watercolor and gouache on paper, Untitled depicts a nude female figure reclining against an armchair. Diebenkorn achieves visual harmony through a brown gradient that demarcates his subject matter. In the foreground, different parts of the woman’s body are rendered with the intensity of watercolor—the darkest brown reserved for the left where her face and body sits in darkness, while parts of her chest and arm on the right are illuminated by being left unpainted. The depiction of distinct repeated curves and shapes with undefined edges also bear similarities to the artist’s early explorations with landscape in his Ocean Park series, with the woman’s left shoulder and left knee mirroring the curve of the armchair in Untitled. The placement of color in the painting—light, medium, and dark brown—unifies the work as a cohesive whole. Of particular interest is Diebenkorn’s use of the ballpoint pen, a choice of medium that intersects his painting with the field of drawing. Writing on the occasion of Diebenkorn’s solo retrospective at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Director of the Department of Drawings, John Elderfield commented “the activity of drawing is what sustains the activity of painting by forming a contrast and complement to the spreading of areas of paint”.
Sol LeWitt Horizontal Brushstrokes in Color, 2003 Gouache on paper 11 x 30 in 27.94 x 76.20 cm
Sol LeWitt Horizontal Brushstrokes in Color, 2003 Horizontal Brushstrokes in Color is part of LeWitt’s body of works on paper. LeWitt had created multiple series of paper-based works, which often focused on geometric shapes and lines. Made out of wavy, loose brushstrokes, this work expresses LeWitt’s interest in continuous seriality, as he re-interpreted this pattern in a number of different colors over the later part of his career. Known as a pioneer of Minimal and Conceptual Art, the artist Sol LeWitt famously challenged conventional notions of the artist and art within his own practice. His career spanned the later half of the twentieth century, until his death in 2007. Exploring the idea that the elegance of art lay within concepts and ideas, rather than purely within its material creation, LeWitt’s best known “wall drawings” consisted of the artist allowing teams of assistants to produce these works, based on instructions that he had provided.
Sol LeWitt Untitled (Irregular Lines), 2002 Gouache on paper 14 3/4 x 14 3/4 in 37.47 x 37.47 cm
Sol LeWitt Untitled (Irregular Lines), 2002 With his interest in seriality, Untitled (Irregular Lines) is another realization of LeWitt’s experimentation with loose brushstrokes, this time with a more muted palette of red and blue. His experimentation with looser lines are a mark of his mature style, as he departed from rigid geometry. Although they focused on the basic elements of line and composition, these works on paper are significant for their departure from the artist’s earlier “instructional” works, as they reveal the artist’s hand. More gestural in nature, works such as Untitled (Irregular Lines) and Horizontal Brushstrokes in Color are interesting insights into how LeWitt continued to challenge his own ideas of art-making over time.
Friedel Dzubas Darklight, 1981 Acrylic on canvas 40 x 40 in 101.60 x 101.60 cm
Friedel Dzubas Darklight, 1981 Friedel Dzubasâ€™s Darklight depicts rising masses of colors and dramatic shapes. Six identifiable tones in various intensities cover the canvas, creating sweeping strokes and a soft, flowing composition. Having experimented with Abstract Expressionist gestures in the 1950s, and progressing to clean-edged pools of color on white canvases in the 1960s, Dzubas started producing his well-known landscapes of vivid coloration from the 1970s onward. During the late 20th century, art critic Clement Greenberg announced simplified forms and color as the new trend in painting, naming it Post Painterly Abstraction (or Color Field painting). Dzubas would take this further and forge his own independent style, referencing the vast historical frescoes of Giambattista Tiepolo to create his lyrical, roiling surfaces.
Tom Wesselmann Bedroom Blond, Black and Green Pillows, 1986 Enamel on cut-out aluminum 53 1/2 x 73 1/2 in 135.89 x 186.69 cm
Tom Wesselmann Bedroom Blond, Black and Green Pillows, 1996 This work revisits the imagery in one of Tom Wesselmann’s best-known series on a monumental scale, the Bedroom Paintings, through the medium of laser-cut metal. In 1984, Wesselmann collaborated with metalworker Alfred Lippincott to develop a new art format. With cut-out metal, the artist envisioned the “scribble as the final product”, allowing him to enlarge his drawings, and to place them directly onto a wall. Created in the early years of the artist’s experimentation with this specific process, the lines of the work remained sharp and precise, yet loose, fluid, and spontaneous. Transforming his intimate depictions of the female nude, Wesselmann described the works on metal as “beautiful, a vivid expression of a valid idea, presented in a specific form that has never been seen before.”
Tom Wesselmann Technical Drawing for Smoker, 1973 Pencil on bristol board 8 1/2 x 9 7/10 in 21.59 x 24.64 cm
Tom Wesselmann Technical Drawing for Smoker, 1973 Technical Drawing for Smoker belongs to Wesselmann’s well known Smoker series. Evoking the world of American advertising, it focuses on close-up images of a woman’s disembodied mouth exhaling smoke. The series emphasizes the graphic quality of the hand, mouth, and cigarette, transforming it into an almost abstract image. Drawings played a crucial role in the formation of the Smoker series; using a projector, Wesselmann enlarged his drawings to immense proportions, allowing him to create the large, colorful canvases of this body of work. Technical Drawing reveals the artistic process behind the creation of these iconic works by the artist, and emphasizes Wesselmann’s technical proficiency.
Tom Wesselmann Study for Proposed Seascape, 1963 Acrylic and pencil on board 9 7/8 x 15 1/2 in 25.08 x 39.37 cm
Tom Wesselmann Study for Proposed Seascape, 1963 Executed in 1963, Study for Proposed Seascape depicts a nude figure lying along the shore. The work reflects Tom Wesselmann’s attention to the female body, and precedes the Seascape series he began in the later half of the 1960s. He completed many of his drawings for proposed seascapes whilst on vacation in New York and Cape Cod. In his studio, Wesselmann used a projector that widened the shapes and details of the drawing. This allowed him to experiment with different perspectives of the nude.
Study for Proposed Seascape sheds light on the quality of the artist’s compositions, particularly in his interactions between positive and negative areas and forms. Wesselmann illustrates how these set up a strong positive-negative relationship between the positive shape— the body—and adjacent negative areas. The drawing prompts a new appreciation for Wesselmann’s continuity in exploring new avenues of art making.
JoaquĂn Torres-GarcĂa Constructivo a cinco tonos con dos figuras discutiendo, c. 1946 Oil on cardboard 21 x 33 in 53.34 x 83.82 cm
Joaquín Torres-García Constructivo a cinco tonos con dos figuras discutiendo, c.1946 Constructivo a cinco tonos con dos figuras discutiendo, or A Five Toned Construction with Two Talking Figures, is an example of the Spanish-Uruguayan artist’s mature work. Completed around 1946, the work comprises key elements of Torres-Garcia’s later style, which was influenced heavily by the principles of Cubism, Primitivism, and Constructivism. From the 1930s onwards, Torres-Garcia had began to champion the aesthetic of Constructive Universalism, in which he expressed his commitment to transmitting concepts through simplified depictions of reality, with the incorporation of symbolic elements that encouraged free, subjective reading. In this work, Torres-Garcia largely limits his color palette to the primary colors of red, yellow, and blue, which he had increasingly used in his practice from 1929 onwards. The artist has divided the canvas into horizontal, flat planes of color, and has similarly fractured the figures into a grid-like formation. Demonstrating the aesthetic principles that the Spanish-Uruguayan artist laid out in his writings throughout the early 1900s, Constructivo a cinco tonos con dos figuras discutiendo shows the lasting influence that artists such as Piet Mondrian, whom he had met in Paris, had on him. Yet, it also simultaneously reaffirms the artist’s commitment to exploring means of expressing concepts that had intuitive, universal resonance.
Alexander Calder Untitled (Pull Toy), 1958 Tin cans and wire 33 1/2 x 6 x 3 in 85.09 x 15.24 x 7.62 cm
Alexander Calder Untitled (Pull Toy), 1958 Untitled (Pull Toy) is a rare children’s toy by Alexander Calder. Given by the artist to a family friend, Calvin Hirsch, in 1958, the toy was made out of beer cans and wire. Although many toys by Calder were lost over time, Pull Toy was carefully preserved. Beginning in the 1920s, he made rocking- and pull-toys wrought from wood, wire, and string. These toys also exemplified Calder’s fascination with motion, which resonate with his larger stabiles and mobiles. The toys Calder made for Calvin Hirsch captured Calder’s whimsical view of the world. The bulbous forms of the cans, strung together by looping wire, show a markedly similar style to the monumental mobile Untitled (1976) which graces the lobby of the National Gallery in Washington, D.C. Pull Toy, fashioned when Calder was sixty-two years old, displays his own affinity with and empathy for children. The tinny sounds produced by the hollow cans was meant to entertain the little boy; the material itself was fashioned from beer cans that Calvin’s father, Clifford, sipped from. Although much has been written of Calder’s artistic ingenuity, this work testifies to Calder’s love for children and his unparalleled ability to bring joy into the world.
Yayoi Kusama Nets Infinity, 1997 Acrylic on canvas 20 x 18 in 50.80 x 45.72 cm
Yayoi Kusama Nets Infinity, 1997 Nets Infinity comprises of a series of painted black crescents, which unfold across a gold background, conveying a sense of latent energy. The work exemplifies key elements of the Infinity Nets series—as the whorl of crescents tighten and loosen, the viewer’s eyes wander across the face of the canvas accordingly. Yayoi Kusama had began the series in the late-1950s, not long after first arriving in New York. The series showcases Kusama’s talent for expressing spiritual, and emotional encounters through her art. The Infinity Nets series challenges conventional approaches towards abstraction; these dizzying canvases, consisting of her trademark crescent-shaped patterns, have been described as “without beginning, end, or center”. “All of us live in the unfathomable mystery and infinitude of the universe. Pursuing ‘philosophy of the universe’ through art under such circumstances has led me to what I call ‘stereotypical repetition’.” —Yayoi Kusama
John Chamberlain Schadenfreude, 1993 Paint and Chromium-plated steel 27 x 48 x 25 in 68.58 x 121.92 x 63.50 cm
John Chamberlain Schadenfreude, 1993 From the 1960s onwards, Chamberlain began to work with galvanised steel. This later work by the artist combines galvanized steel with wild hues of pink, yellow and blue into a ribbon-like arrangement. Cryptically entitling this work Schadenfreude, Chamberlain’s twisting arrangement is wildly painted, as if it had been dripped, sprayed and poured upon at random. Known for his inventiveness, his sculptures were experiments that connected the gestural brushstrokes with the consumerist preoccupation of Pop art on a monumental scale. Once commenting that the colors of his sculpture “became flashy like lipstick or eyeshadow”, color formed an important component of Chamberlain’s artistic practice. Chamberlain was known to have worked with galvanised steel extensively, particularly in the 1960s, and continued to work with the medium through the later years, alongside other industrial materials such as plexiglas, polymers, aluminium foil, and most recognisably, crushed auto body parts. In demonstrating that art can be made from nearly everything, Chamberlain influenced many artists to use unconventional materials, including Dan Flavin and Carl Andre. Schadenfreude combines abstract gestural brushstrokes with the consumerist preoccupation of Pop art on a monumental scale.
Roy Lichtenstein Brushstroke II, 1986 Hand painted cherry wood sculpture 64 x 34 x 8 in 162.56 x 86.36 x 20.32 cm Edition out of 10, #9/10
Roy Lichtenstein Brushstroke II, 1986 Brushstroke II is an example of Roy Lichtensteinâ€™s mature sculptural work, and belongs to a series of sculptures that depict enlarged brushstrokes, executed in a style that evokes notions of comic illustrations. Lichtenstein created this series of sculptures from the 1980s onwards; these works were based on an earlier series of paintings that he had made from 1965 - 1966, which featured the similar motif of the brushstroke. The original paintings provided incisive commentary on the elevated status of the brushstroke during the Abstract Expressionist movement, where painting was seen as a form of ultimate expression. By re-creating the brushstroke in a format that implied mass production and industry, Lichtenstein subverts popular connotations of the brushstroke. Over the years, Lichtenstein created monumental Brushstroke sculptures, many of which are installed in prominent locations, including the Hirschorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Indianapolis Museum of Art, amongst others.
Roy Lichtenstein Drawing for Modern Painting Triptych II, 1967 Graphite and colored pencils on paper 4 1/4 x 10 in 10.79 x 25.40 cm
Roy Lichtenstein Drawing for Modern Painting Triptych II, 1967 This drawing belongs to Roy Lichtenstein’s “Modern” series, inspired by comic strip illustrations. Lichtenstein referenced Art Deco aesthetics in works that took the geometric lines of Art Deco art and architecture, and re-created them as patterns.
Drawing for Modern Painting Triptych II is a study done in preparation for a larger painting, Modern Painting Triptych II, which belongs to the Art Institute of Chicago. As Art Deco patterns appeared within buildings, places of entertainment, and mass media imagery, Lichtenstein used benday dots, repeating the same structured patterns over and over again. In ways that evoked mechanical reproduction, Lichtenstein’s work can be read as a commentary on the ubiquity of mass culture, an intrinsic theme that featured throughout his artistic career.
Richard Serra Curve 2, 1981 Paintstick on paper 38 1/4 x 50 in 97.16 x 127 cm
Richard Serra Curve 2, 1981 While Richard Serraâ€˜s massive sculptures feature his distinctive bold aesthetic, the artist created drawings that played a significant role in his body of work during the last forty years of his career. Using black paintstick, applied in repetitive and vigorous gestures, the drawings illustrate the artistâ€™s exploration of surface texture and new methods of drawing. While the predominant use of black feature a similar intensity of weight and volume as his sculptures, the visibility of his gestures accentuates the unique physical and temporal aspects of his practice. Although the drawings share a similar focus on process with his sculptural work, they form a distinct part of his oeuvre.
Adolph Gottlieb Asterisk on Brown, 1967 Oil on canvas 40 x 30 in 101.60 x 76.20 cm
Adolph Gottlieb Asterisk on Brown, 1967 Made up of three components, a red circle, a black disc, and a yellow asterisk, Asterisk on Brown is a serene rendering of a recurring motif that Gottlieb established in his Burst series of works. In this work, the three elements hang against a brown background, emphasizing a sense of suspension within the rectangle of the canvas. Gottlieb began working on the Burst series in 1957, and continued working on them right up until the year of his death. His mature works have been described as using â€œloose, floating, flyingâ€? elements, reinforced by the colors that Gottlieb lay down. Much like many of his peers, Gottlieb is known for associating painting with emotion and expressiveness, using painting to connect to broader semantic possibilities.
Richard Serra L-1, 2000 Paintstick on paper 30 3/8h x 39 7/8w in 77.15h x 101.28w cm
Richard Serra L-1, 2000 Richard Serra’s towering steel sculptures have made him a crucial figure in contemporary art, but his sculptural brilliance has overshadowed an equally important facet of his practice—drawing. Using black paintstick, applied in repetitive and vigorous gestures, the drawings illustrate the artist’s exploration of surface texture and new methods of drawing. In 2011, the first retrospective of Serra’s drawings was staged at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and later traveled to SFMOMA and The Menil Collection, Houston.
Helwaser Gallery specializes in post-war and contemporary art. The gallery has placed works in the collections of private collectors and institutions across Europe and New York, presenting works from seminal artists such as Adolph Gottlieb, Agnes Martin, and sculpture from Alexander Calder. The gallery has participated in notable fairs, including The Armory Show, Art Miami, Salon: Art + Design, BRAFA (Brussels), and Paris: Art + Design. Currently, the gallery is being redesigned and remodeled as a contemporary exhibition space, and is closed for construction. For all inquiries and appointments, please email: email@example.com
Helwaser Gallery Opening January 2019: 833 Madison Avenue, 3rd Floor New York, NY 10021 By appointment only Phone: +1 (646) 724 9580, 11AM- 5PM (M-F) E-mail: info@HelwaserGallery.com
833 Madison Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10021 16 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10075 Phone: +1 (646) 724 9580 | E-mail: info@HelwaserGallery.com Phone: +1 (646) 649 3744 | E-mail: info@HelwaserGallery.com www.HelwaserGallery.com www.HelwaserGallery.com