Ed Mieczkowski: Visual Paradox and Perceptual Art
Exhibition: October 3 – November 3, 2013
Artist Reception: Thursday, October 3, 7-9PM
Gallery Hours: Tues- Sat 10-5:30; Art Walk Thursdays 10-5 and 7-9
LewAllen Galleries Scottsdale is pleased to present Ed Mieczkowski: Visual Paradox and Perceptual Art, a solo exhibition of paintings, sculpture and works on paper from more than 45 years of the career of artist Ed Mieczkowski who was an early pioneer of the Op Art movement and is a noted hard-edge geometric abstractionist.
Mieczkowski’s work appeared in the 1964 Time magazine article that first introduced the term Op Art to the public. His work was also included in The Responsive Eye exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1965 which was the first major museum exhibition of perceptual art. For more than 60 years, Mieczkowski has created striking examples of optically engaging and geometrically elegant paintings, constructions, sculpture and drawings, taking complex relationships between points, planes, lines and angles and making stunningly dramatic art forms from them.
Born in Pittsburgh in 1929, Mieczkowski is regarded as an important figure in American art history having been one of the earliest proponents of perceptual art and a leader in various forms of geometric abstraction. In The Responsive Eye exhibition at MoMA, his work appeared alongside other important perceptual artists such as Josef Albers, Victor Vasarely, Julian Stanzcak, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, Richard Anuszkiewicz, Carlos Cruz-Diaz, Ad Reinhardt, Jesús Rafael Soto and Bridget Riley. Mieczkowski’s work was also a part of Optic Nerve: Perceptual Art of the 1960s, the major exhibition at the Columbus Museum of Art in 2007 that presented a major reconsideration of Op Art.
In 1960, he co-founded the Anonima, an artist collective that rejected the egoism and automatic style of Abstract Expressionism in favor of precise grid-based work grounded in scientific and psychological principles of optical perception. Sharing studio space in New York and other locations, they followed a rigorous, self-imposed program of painting exercises to explore the effects of color, brightness and form on visual perception, prefiguring and becoming part of the Op Art movement, a style that rivaled Abstract Expressionism for dominance in the mid-1960s. Mieczkowski went on to innovate distinctive variations using perceptual and geometric principles to create an extensive body of abstraction during a career that has spanned more than 60 years.
Mieczkowski’s work is distinguished by a proficiency in joining complex and inventive geometric patterns with sophisticated and subtle gradations in spectral color and tonal value. This ability in both gray-scale and vibrantly colored work places him among the most versatile and accomplished practitioners of perceptual abstraction.
His work in both Op Art and Geometric Abstraction has been constantly evolving, though always it has mediated an active collaboration between artist and viewer. Employing an endless variety of kaleidoscopic colors and an engaging oscillation between planes of perception, his work in both genres presents playful and seductive challenges to the viewer’s eyes that both enliven and delight the visual experience.
Mieczkowski's more recent work uses the straight lines, curves and angles of geometric abstraction to create dazzling representations of concepts from the new sciences, especially biomedicine and biotechnology.
He lived and worked in New York City for many years and taught at the Cleveland Institute of Art for nearly four decades. He now lives near Los Angeles where he continues to create new work. His work has been collected by museums in Israel, Denmark and Poland as well as the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Akron Art Museum, the New Jersey State Museum and the Robert Hull Fleming Museum in Vermont.
The artist will travel to LewAllen Galleries Scottsdale from his home in Los Angeles for the exhibition and will be present during the reception on October 3, 2013 from 7-9pm.
7036 East Main Street
Scottsdale, AZ 85251 | 480.970.3600
Press Contact: Whitney Piazza