Gagosian is pleased to present These paintings are of themselves, an exhibition of ten new paintings and nine new works on paper by Brice Marden. This is Marden’s first exhibition at Gagosian in Chelsea. A group of eight paintings, some of which were initiated as early as 2013, were completed in 2021; one additional canvas, Prelude (2011–21), and a separate larger, two-panel painting, Rocks (2008/2017–21), are also on view.
These paintings evoke the daily and seasonal shifts in natural light and color that Marden observes when working in his studio in Tivoli in upstate New York. He begins with drawing, filling some canvases with gestural glyphs that occupy a realm between writing and painting. Over these, he applies sinuous, multihued networks of linear brushstrokes, establishing interrelationships between the compositions’ straight and curving lines, and between their contours—whether defined or implied—and perimeters.
Each vertical panel measures 8 by 6 feet, comprised of an upper 6-by-6-foot square with a 2-by-6-foot section beneath. The paintings’ lower registers echo the form of a predella—the horizontal panel of smaller companion paintings that Renaissance artists added at the base of an altarpiece. Stained with dilute washes of earthy terre verte, these residual sections import the palette of the larger areas above them.
Also on view is Rocks, a double-paneled painting more than 22 feet in length. Begun in Marden’s studio in Hydra, Greece, and completed in Tivoli, its expansive surface is defined by ribbonlike lines and fields of color. Related works on paper made on the Caribbean island of Nevis reveal the immediacy and range of Marden’s drawing practice and exemplify the artist’s sustained engagement with the traditions of Chinese poetry and calligraphy, which he initiated in the 1980s and has continuously developed ever since.
The exhibition will be accompanied by an illustrated catalogue with an essay by Eliot Weinberger.
The Generative Surface
Eileen Costello explores the oft-overlooked importance of paper choice to the mediums of drawing and printmaking, from the Renaissance through the present day.
Private Pages Made Public
Megan N. Liberty explores artists’ engagement with notebooks and diaries, thinking through the various meanings that arise when these private ledgers become public.
The River Café Cookbook
London’s River Café, a culinary mecca perched on a bend in the River Thames, celebrated its thirtieth anniversary in 2018. To celebrate this milestone and the publication of her cookbook River Café London, cofounder Ruth Rogers sat down with Derek Blasberg to discuss the famed restaurant’s allure.
Intimate Grandeur: Glenstone Museum
Paul Goldberger tracks the evolution of Mitchell and Emily Rales’s Glenstone Museum in Potomac, Maryland. Set amid 230 acres of pristine landscape and housing a world-class collection of modern and contemporary art, this graceful complex of pavilions, designed by architects Thomas Phifer and Partners, opened to the public in the fall of 2018.
Brice Marden: Four Quartets
Four paintings by Brice Marden have been incorporated into a new dance commission based on T. S. Eliot’s Four Quartets, with choreography by Pam Tanowitz, and music by Kaija Saariaho. The performance will premiere on July 6, 2018 at the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard as part of the SummerScape Festival. Gideon Lester, the Fisher Center’s artistic director for theater and dance, spoke with Marden about the canvases that form the set design.
Robert Pincus-Witten on Brice Marden
In honor of Robert Pincus-Witten, we share an essay he wrote in 1991 on Brice Marden’s Grove Group.
It reminds me of something, and I don’t know what it is.
November 9–December 21, 2019
980 Madison Avenue, New York