Bartha Contemporary is pleased to participate in the second edition of Art Düsseldorf, the leading contemporary art-fair located between two cultural regions of Germany’s Rheinland and Ruhr-area.
Split into two distinct sections the gallery booth will feature both a dedicated showcase of works by the late New York painter James Howell, alongside a presentation of works by Sarah Chilvers, Susan Morris and Allyson Strafella.
James Howell’s (1935–2014) lifelong study into the properties of colour perception, occupies a unique place in the recent history of painting. Described as looking into a fog, each piece is part of a consistent body of work, depicting a carefully calibrated gradation of greys. Concerned with the subtle movement of light, Howell’s refined works invite the viewer to consider the possibilities within a conceptual framework, that is simultaneously narrow and infinite. The experience of Howell’s paintings is an existential exploration into the process of seeing. The presentation at Art Düsseldorf offers an opportunity to view the work of this radical painter within the broader context of current art practice.
A monograph by Dr. Alistair Rider on the life and work of James Howell will be published by Circa Publishing, London in 2019. This presentation is made possible with support from The James Howell Foundation, New York.
A focused both featuring works by three female artists, Sarah Chilvers, Susan Morris and Allyson Strafella, who all recently exhibited at the gallery in London will complement the gallery showcase.
British artist Sarah Chilvers (b. 1970) will be presenting a suite of recent paintings, which combine her exceptional sense for colour and intricate compositions. Painted on loosely cut plywood panels, the precise nature of each work is intentionally put in contrast by the imperfections of their support. This interplay between the accidental and highly conceived, as well as the laborious execution result in mesmerising works that capture the viewer’s attention and takes them on a journey of discovery, wonder and disorientation.
Modern technology, the recording of time, and the documentation of movement come together in Susan Morris’s (b. 1962) work. By using tools such as digital tracking devices worn on the body, the artist records her daily routine or seemingly repetitive gestures to produce images that reveal a body caught up in the machinations of clock and calendrical time. At the centre of Morris’s practice, explored through a range of different media, is the very traditional idea of an artist’s self-portraiture serving as a commentary on subjectivity in general.
American artist Allyson Strafella’s (b. 1969) drawings made over the past three decades expose the artist’s refined minimalist language, that relies both on audacious mark-making and a striking use of colour. Instead of traditional drawing tools Allyson Strafella has been working with typewriters, standard and custom built. Using sheets of pigmented handmade paper, she creates assured abstract forms by applying dense repetitive marks. These concentrated forms are derived from the natural and constructed landscape, which suggest a surprising familiarity.