Structured Color presents 21 works of art from the 1960s and 1970s created by seven artists who examine color interactions in reductive geometric compositions. Each artist has selected an easily readable composition to move the viewer quickly from identifying the compositional format to examining the overall effect of the painting. To keep the focus on color, the artists used a geometric composition repeated serially. This allowed for precise color experiments that focused on the viewer’s perception. The examples in Structured Color were chosen to reflect characteristic compositions of the seven artists. For example the square or rectangle is favored for serial compositions by Richard Anuszkiewicz (b.1930). Julian Stanczak (b.1928) uses interlocking forms and Tadasky (b.1935) repeats concentric circles. Both Gene Davis (1920-1985) and Karl Benjamin (b.1925) explore the rhythm of the stripe. The ambiguous space created by the fusion of painting and sculpture in the shaped canvas is yet another way to consider structure and color used by Charles Hinman (b.1930) and Thomas Downing (1928-1985).
These new approaches to composition, color, and engagement with the viewer were part of a broader trend by artists in the 1960s to move away from the emotion and personal expression of the Abstract Expressionists. Structured Color demonstrates the new kind of painting that Anuszkiewicz, Benjamin, Davis, Downing, Hinman, Stanczak, and Tadasky found using the calculated art of geometry to participate in recent scientific understandings of perception and to engage the viewer through flexible readings of the painting in terms of figure and ground and spatial dimensions. The seven artists in the exhibition Structured Color are America’s leaders of the international style called Op, or Perceptual, art.
Online exhibition at www.dwigmore.com
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