Text by Klaus Kertess, David Pagel, Stephen Westfall.
Published by Gary Snyder Gallery
Ralph Humphrey (1932–1990) was one of the foremost exponents of postminimalist painting in 1960s New York. As much a sculptor as a painter, Humphrey created surfaces of almost absurd tactility using casein and modeling paste: thick slabs of knobby, brightly hued pigment, arranged in fat lozenges, grids or squares. These works loom out at the viewer with both gravity and humor, insisting on a measured encounter; as the artist wrote in a journal entry, “Space coming forward is more of a confronting, more like an experience, but an experience that calls attention to its own time … I find that when the painting starts coming back at me I know I’m going to get to the observer.” This volume provides a detailed view of Humphrey’s work from 1973 to 1984, along with critical reflections on his process and his reputation.
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