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Simon Hantaï

Les blancs de la couleur, la couleur du blanc

January 27–March 5, 2022
980 Madison Avenue, New York

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Installation view

Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Rob McKeever

Works Exhibited

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1968 Oil on canvas, 90 ⅝ × 80 inches (230 × 203 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1968

Oil on canvas, 90 ⅝ × 80 inches (230 × 203 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1969 Oil on canvas, 50 ⅝ × 46 ⅞ inches (128.5 × 119 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1969

Oil on canvas, 50 ⅝ × 46 ⅞ inches (128.5 × 119 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975 Acrylic on canvas, 92 ⅛ × 93 inches (234 × 236 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975

Acrylic on canvas, 92 ⅛ × 93 inches (234 × 236 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975 Acrylic on canvas, 92 ½ × 210 ⅝ inches (235 × 535 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975

Acrylic on canvas, 92 ½ × 210 ⅝ inches (235 × 535 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975 Acrylic on linen, 92 ½ × 94 ½ inches (235 × 240 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Bertrand Huet

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1975

Acrylic on linen, 92 ½ × 94 ½ inches (235 × 240 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Bertrand Huet

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1976 Acrylic on linen, 78 × 76 ¾ inches (195.5 × 195 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1976

Acrylic on linen, 78 × 76 ¾ inches (195.5 × 195 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980 Acrylic on canvas, 104 ¾ × 177 ¼ inches (266 × 450 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Thomas Lannes

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980

Acrylic on canvas, 104 ¾ × 177 ¼ inches (266 × 450 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Thomas Lannes

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980 Acrylic on canvas, 51 ¾ × 39 ¼ inches (131.5 × 99.5 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980

Acrylic on canvas, 51 ¾ × 39 ¼ inches (131.5 × 99.5 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980 Acrylic on canvas, 116 ⅛ × 180 ⅜ inches (295 × 458 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980

Acrylic on canvas, 116 ⅛ × 180 ⅜ inches (295 × 458 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980 Acrylic on canvas, 51 ¼ × 38 ⅝ inches (130 × 98 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980

Acrylic on canvas, 51 ¼ × 38 ⅝ inches (130 × 98 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980 Acrylic on canvas, 58 ⅛ × 46 ½ inches (147.5 × 118 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Tabula, 1980

Acrylic on canvas, 58 ⅛ × 46 ½ inches (147.5 × 118 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–95 Acrylic on canvas, 118 ⅛ × 107 ⅞ inches (300 × 274 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–95

Acrylic on canvas, 118 ⅛ × 107 ⅞ inches (300 × 274 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–94 Acrylic on canvas, 59 ½ × 217 ¾ inches (151 × 553 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–94

Acrylic on canvas, 59 ½ × 217 ¾ inches (151 × 553 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris. Photo: Robert Glowacki

About

The function of color is essentially linked to light. Light is necessarily the foundation of the world on the material, absolute level. It is, precisely, the sign and symbol of another infinity.
—Simon Hantaï

Gagosian is pleased to present an exhibition of eighteen paintings by Simon Hantaï (1922–2008). Les blancs de la couleur, la couleur du blanc, curated by Anne Baldassari, is Gagosian’s second solo exhibition of Hantaï’s work since the gallery announced its representation of the artist’s estate in 2019, and occurs in the centenary year of his birth. Many of the works in the exhibition, which occupies both floors of the gallery at 980 Madison Avenue, have not been previously exhibited.

Les blancs de la couleur, la couleur du blanc—the title alludes to Hantaï’s use of white in several series of works—features paintings made using the artist’s pliage (folding) technique, in which a canvas is crumpled and knotted, painted over, and then spread out to reveal a pattern of alternations between pigment and ground. In contrast to LES NOIRS DU BLANC, LES BLANCS DU NOIR, also curated by Baldassari, an exhibition of black-and-white paintings and prints dating from 1951 to 1997 that was presented at Gagosian Le Bourget in 2019–20, the current selection focuses on work distinguished by color combinations of primary and secondary colors, including blue and orange, yellow and purple, and red and green. These powerful hues had a unique significance for Hantaï, representing a link to the clothing worn by his mother on feast days—a foundational image from childhood—and reflecting his study of Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, and Goethe’s Theory of Colors (1810).

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