The Revival of Pattern & Decoration

Zane Bennett Contemporary Art
Sep 30, 2021 4:36PM

The ravishing upstart movement of the mid-1970s is making a major comeback.

Installation of Robert Zakanitch's work at Zane Bennett Contemporary Art, 2021.

The ravishing upstart movement of the mid-1970s, first made in opposition to the era's overarching machismo within Minimalist and Modernist circles, is making a major comeback thanks to the Hessel Museum of Art at Bard College's ambitious survey. Roberta Smith at The New York Times writes that Curator Anna Katz leaves “no stone unturned,” as the extensive exhibition highlights a wide array of craft mediums and features almost every artist ever exhibited in a Pattern & Decoration show. That includes Robert Zakanitch, who is credited as one of the founders of P&D.

Robert Zakanitch, Untitled - Mostly Mozart '83, 1983, Color serigraph, 50 x 38 in (127 x 96.5 cm), Edition of 144, $2400.

Robert Zakanitch, Untitled - Mostly Mozart '77, 1977, Color serigraph, 64.5 x 40 in (163.8 x 101.6 cm), Edition of 144, $2400.

Zakanitch, born in 1935, draws inspiration from his childhood memories of the patterned wallpaper and opulent furnishings that adorned his grandmother’s home. The artist’s large, luxurious renditions of wallpaper add a modern flare to traditional décor. The featured serigraphs from the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art collection are titled after the year they graced the official posters of the titular festival at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Both vivid works on paper unite an interest in decorative arts with the emotive atmosphere of classical music. Untitled - Mostly Mozart '77, with its soft petals and leaves, exemplifies the feminine aspirations of P&D. Untitled - Mostly Mozart '83 boasts a magnificent swell of golden yellow, a visual representation of an orchestral crescendo and a pleasing tribute to the bright buds of summer.

Detail image of Robert Zakanitch's Untitled - Mostly Mozart '77.

Detail image of Robert Zakanitch's Untitled - Mostly Mozart '83.

Zane Bennett Contemporary Art
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