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MATTHEW MARKS GALLERY
Text by Bob Nickas.
This volume catalogs Vija Celmins’ (born 1938) first new body of work since 2010, featuring paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures.
The Latvian-born, New York–based artist has been rendering nature imagery from black-and-white photographic sources since the 1960s, exploring the same subjects repeatedly in paintings, drawings and prints. Here, she focuses on two motifs she has employed for several decades: the ocean’s surface and the night sky. The imagery, however, is not her foremost concern: “The recognizable image is just one element to consider. The paintings seem more a record of my grappling with how to transform that image into a painting and make it alive.” This process can be seen in A Painting in Six Parts (1986–87/2012–16), a group of six oil paintings based on a photograph she took 50 years ago from a pier in Venice, California.
"Blackboard Tableau #14" (2011-15) is reproduced from 'Vija Celmins.'
PRAISE AND REVIEWS
[Celmins'] tendecy to compress vast expanses into small frames means that even as her paintings inspire meditative contemplations of nature, viewers can never fully shake the the sensation that they are looking at a fixed image.
STATUS: Out of stock indefinitely.
FROM THE ARTBOOK BLOG
CORY REYNOLDS | DATE 3/23/2018
Featured image, of Vija Celmins' New York studio, 2017, is reproduced from the exquisite new Celmins monograph from Matthew Marks Gallery. Bob Nickas writes, "Above the street in a cool, orderly studio there is a sense of being both near and far—far from city noise and the earthbound, near to a stillness, a center of gravity and suspense… The oceans are painterly, with traces of brushwork, but the same cannot be said of the night skies. This difference may account for the distance between the sea and the heavens, between what may be accessed and what can only be imagined, each with its own depths… The ocean and the sky both serve to remind us that the limits of a painting are like the limits of a world. They inevitably make us feel small, even vulnerable at times, though often filled with wonder." continue to blog
THE MUSEUM OF MODERN ART, NEW YORK
USD $40.00 | CAN $54
Pub Date: 10/15/2005
Active | In stock