Galerie Richard New York is pleased to announce the exhibition “Painting Into Three Dimensions” from February 2 through 28, 2016. The exhibition presents the gallery program dedicated to artists who develop the third dimension in their paintings: Linda Besemer, Bram Bogart, Sven-Ole Frahm, Ron Gorchov, Norio Imai, Takesada Matsutani, and David Ryan. The exhibition gathers different generations of artists from Europe, the USA and Japan that have been supported by the gallery. As the gallery moved from Chelsea to Lower East Side and gradually draws a new audience, a series of group shows in 2016 will emphasize some specificities of the gallery program. The exhibition also pays homage to the beautiful Frank Stella Retrospective at the Whitney Museum of Art.
The exhibition is the continuation of “Painting Toward Three Dimensions” in 2012, which unfortunately was interrupted due to Hurricane Sandy. The previous show featured Bram Bogart, Ron Gorchov, and Takesada Matsutani. Working separately on three continents, Europe, America, and Asia, these artists moved from two-dimensional to three-dimensional painting and have been continuously developing the style since the 60s. They wanted to bring the material to life, creating new experiences to enhance the audience’s enjoyment. The paintings became more sensual through the new relationships developed between color, composition, and texture. The new exhibition adds Norio Imai, another historical artist from The Gutai in Japan who developed the third dimension in the 60’s.
Bram Bogart was most influenced by Van Gogh, who applied a touch of texture for each color. In 1960, besides beginning to work on ground, he stuck jute fabric on panels and further strengthened the back of the paintings with wooden crosspieces. He observed that the thicker the material is, the more variations he could create in gestures, signs and strips. He considers himself a painter, not a sculptor, saying, “There is no dimension related to sculpture in my works. The third dimension is the depth of the paint layer.”(1)
In 1966 Ron Gorchov made the first negatively curved structure with a wire dipped into a plastic liquid. He realized that as the whole thing got stronger, it could make less acute corners. He finally discovered the best method was to start with a rectangle, so the curved part has to spring off it. Therefore, the structure itself becomes an argument to the rectangle, and that interested him. (2)
In the Iate 50’s Matsutani, a Gutai artist, was interested in the organic cell forms he could watch at the microscope. Accidentally, he noticed that the wood glue that he poured on a canvas dried on surface forming like a skin. He blew the air inside with a straw and the surface of skin swelled and became a soft globe. He also created waving shapes by pouring the glue using a roller on the canvas. He wishes “to instill his sense of sensuality in his artworks (3).
The new exhibition adds Norio Imai, another historical artist from Japan who developed the third dimension in the 60’s as a Gutai artist. From his very beginnings he added molded three-dimensional plastic shapes between the white painted canvas and the stretcher. By doing so, he plays with light by adding tonality to the monochrome and creates fluid and organic curved lines. The title of his recent work, “Shadows of Memory” reflect his inclination towards the spiritual and immaterial.
The exhibition also gathers for the first time these artists and younger generations of artists: Linda Besemer, Sven-Ole Frahm, and David Ryan.
After Bogart, Linda Besemer’s paintings are at the same time the work of art and the material. “Her paintings are insouciant and mysterious, subtle and bold. They establish visual continuities between what is seen and what is hidden, between the straight and the curved, and between the stiff and flowing.” (John Yau) Her work creates a dialogue between the third physical dimension and the third optical one.
Sven-Ole Frahm is influenced by Constructivism and add some playfulness and sensuality to it by developing a new role to the canvas as a material to replace the flat pictorial paint gesture. He cuts painted canvases and sews them together, cut the canvas to make lines and empty spaces, add wood elements behind or in front of it. His work combines a perfect composition and experimental new expressive techniques.
From a drawing of lines and colors, David Ryan has the ability to reproduce it by intricately combining only monochrome panels. Lines only exist as empty spaces of monochrome panels. The works are composed of layered panels, which are not simply superimposed but integrated in 3D assemblages. His abstract three-dimensional paintings deliver an unexpected grace and visual jolt by playing with surfaces, lines and colors in our present world of technical and visual complexity.