Dike Blair, James Woodfill,
Stephen Westfall and Ben Dowell
July 9th – August 8th, 2010
Curated by Matt Wycoff
Opening Reception: Friday, July 9, 6:30 - 9:00 pm.
Untitled, oil on canvas, 60 x 60 inches, 2010
Dike Blair, James Woodfill, Stephen Westfall and Ben Dowell
July 9th – August 8th, 2010
Curated by Matt Wycoff
The Hogar Collection is pleased to present Lateralisms,
a group show representing two generations of artists closely tied to the
decisive contingency of minimalism, and to its redrawing of the parameters
around both the artwork and the self/artist. The exhibition assesses a
slice of the ever-shifting boundaries and implications of post minimal
painting and sculptural installation.
In his essay, Art and Objecthood, Michael Fried famously decried minimalism
for its theatricality. In Fried’s view the minimalist object was
little more than the situation it composed. It is in this sense that Fried
spoke of minimalism’s “hollowness” – its lack
of self-sufficiency and autonomy from the everyday world. Art’s
contingence on the viewer, history and site continues to resonate amid
dialogues concerning interconnection and interdependence that globalization
and postmodernism have made sometimes painfully, sometimes redundantly,
Whereas modern works purported a linear thrust focused on the new the
works represented in Lateralisms foreground return as a formal strategy.
This process of return privileges equation more than differentiation,
and is part of an ongoing shift in the meaning of art. This shift also
marks a change in our understanding of the artist, and of individuality
more broadly. But whereas deconstruction spoke of the death of the author,
the changes marked by the minimalist object expanded the boundaries and
contingencies of the artwork, individuality and authorship, while retaining
something essentially modern. Fried’s critique itself alludes to
this connection to modernism. By framing the minimalist object as “hollow”
Fried implies the existence of some essential vessel or form, however
compromised. In this sense, the genealogy of minimalism over the past
forty years is that of a restrained optimism in the wake of modernism’s
failed dogmatism, and diligence in response to the vague nihilisms of
postmodernism – an embrace of contingency, but a strong belief in
the continuation of a distinct practice of art.
The subtle, ever more precise movements and shifts that characterize the
work in Lateralisms is a kind of horizontal movement in many
directions simultaneously. The results of this movement are artworks that
seem more aware, closer to embodying the contradictions that enable them
in the first place. This lateral movement across time and genre begins
to account for how an installation and a painting may have come to mean
the same thing; not in the sense of their most literal physicality, but
in the demands they place on the viewer and the ways they interact with
history and the physical world around them.
Dike Blair is a painter and sculptor. Since 1980 his
work has been shown in venues such as the Wexner Center for the Arts,
the Walker Art Center, Centre Georges Pompidou, the Weatherspoon Art Museum
and was included in the 2004 Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of
American Art. In 2007 Blair published “Again” a collection
of interviews and essays. Most recently, Blair has been the recipient
of a 2009 John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship and the 2010 - 2011 Rome Prize.
Blair is represented by Feature Inc. in New York City, and has an upcoming
solo exhibition at Gagosian Gallery, New York in the fall of 2010.
James Woodfill is an artist living and working in Kansas
City, Missouri. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally
in museums and galleries such as the Leedy Voulkos Art Center, Rocket
Gallery, the Shore Institute of the Contemporary Arts, the Wichita Museum
and the Daum Museum. Woodfill’s work has been reviewed by publications
such as Art In America, Art Papers, The New Art Examiner and Sculpture
Magazine. Woodfill has also worked extensively in the public art realm
where his work has been recognized by the American Institute of Architects
and the Americans for the Arts/Public Art Network. Woodfill has taught
in a variety of capacities at Kansas City Art Institute since 1998.
Stephen Westfall is a painter and writer currently living
in Rome as a 2009-2010 Rome Prize Fellow. Westfall is the recipient of
numerous awards and fellowships including a 2007 John Simon Guggenheim
Fellowship and a 2006 Nancy Graves Foundation Grant. He is included in
many public collections including the National Academy of Design, the
Kemper Museum, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the Louisana Museum and the
Albertina Museum. Westfall is an Associate Professor at the Mason Gross
School of the Arts at Rutgers University and Painting Co-chair at the
Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College. Westfall is
represented by Lennon Weinberg Gallery in New York City and George Lawson
Gallery in San Francisco.
Ben Dowell is a painter living and working in Brooklyn
New York. He has exhibited nationally and internationally in venues such
as Gavin Brown @ Passerby, Smith-Stewart Gallery, Galleria Alberto Sendros,
and the UCLA Department of Art’s Wight Biennial. He is an alumni
of Skowhegan and the Hunter College MFA program. Dowell is currently in
residence at the Marie Walsh Sharpe Foundation, in Brooklyn, New York.
Matt Wycoff is an artist and writer (and curator) living
in Brooklyn, New York. His artwork is represented by The Hogar Collection.
L or G Train to Lorimer St, exit on Metropolitan, walk under BQE towards
Manhattan, left on Marcy Ave, 2 blocks turn right on Grand at the corner
L Train to
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JMZ to Marcy
Ave, walk 5 blocks north on Marcy, turn left on Grand St.
By car from Manhattan:
Drive over the
Williamsburg Bridge, 2nd immediate exit at South 5th St, left at light
on Havemeyer, right on Grand Street, 4 blocks on right.