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b. 1953, USA

Peter Halley Biography

For over twenty-five years, Peter Halley’s geometric paintings have been engaged in a play of rela­tionships between what he calls 'prisons' and 'cells' that reflect the increasing geometricization of social space. Inspired by New York City’s gridded urban plan and by his own isolation within it, he imagines the abstract shape as a barred prison cell connected to the outside world through electronic communication.

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Largely associated with Neo-Conceptualism and Minimalist art, Peter Halley is famed for his vibrantly-coloured geometrical paintings, often described as square prisons. Halley challenges the concept of space, viewing his principle motif, the square, as a metaphor for confinement. Reflecting the idea of prisons, solitary themes play crucial to Halley’s work. The artist refers to the time when he first arrived in New York, recollecting the isolated hardships he faced upon living alone. The importance of solitary isolation in his work is further enhanced by his intensely bright, almost fluorescent, colour palette, which has often been interpreted as a clear movement away from the natural world. Using Roll-a-Tex and Day-Glo paint as his main material sources, Halley’s art thus transcends modern principles as a reflection of contemporary society.

Peter Halley Featured Artworks

Bright by Peter Halley contemporary artwork
Peter HalleyBright, 2018Day-Glo, Roll-a-Tex and acrylic on canvas
187 x 184 cm
Mimmo Scognamiglio Artecontemporanea Contact Gallery
Real Time by Peter Halley contemporary artwork
Peter HalleyReal Time, 2008Acrylic, day-glo acrylic, Roll-a-Tex on canvas
75 x 79 1/2 inches
Gary Tatintsian Gallery Contact Gallery
Component by Peter Halley contemporary artwork
Peter HalleyComponent, 2000Pearlescent acrylic and Roll-A-Tex on two adjoined canvasses
170 x 150 cm
Almine Rech Contact Gallery
Cell by Peter Halley contemporary artwork
Peter HalleyCell, 1983Acrylic and Roll-A-Tex on unprimed canvas
152 x 203 cm
Almine Rech Contact Gallery
To be titled by Peter Halley contemporary artwork
Peter HalleyTo be titled, 2016Acrylic, fluorescent acrylic and Roll-A-Tex on canvas
182.9 x 195.6 cm
Almine Rech Contact Gallery

Peter Halley Recent Exhibitions

Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Coalition for the Homeless at Almine Rech, Brussels
Closed
26 May–7 June 2020 Group Exhibition Coalition for the Homeless Almine RechOnline Only
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Beyond Color at Mimmo Scognamiglio Artecontemporanea, Milan
Closed
8 October–11 December 2019 Group Exhibition Beyond Color Mimmo Scognamiglio Artecontemporanea, MilanMilan
Contemporary art exhibition, Peter Halley, Peter Halley at Gary Tatintsian Gallery, Moscow
Closed
23 June–10 September 2017 Peter Halley Gary Tatintsian Gallery, MoscowMoscow

Peter Halley Represented By

Peter Halley In Related Press

Peter Halley at Sperone Westwater and Lever House Related Press Peter Halley at Sperone Westwater and Lever House 1 February 2019, Art in America

A central fixture in New York's conceptualist Neo-Geo scene of the 1980s, Peter Halley's work all but disappeared from the city's galleries by the start of the '90s, and for the subsequent decade was exhibited chiefly abroad. Sperone Westwater's recent show comprised ten paintings Halley made between 1997 and 2002 that are owned by Gian Enzo...

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Where are they now? Tracking the Neo-geometric Conceptualists. Related Press Where are they now? Tracking the Neo-geometric Conceptualists. 4 April 2016, LEAP Magazine

We live in a state of the perpetual present. With the revolving door of exhibitions in more and more venues, commercial and scholarly alike, thousands of artists appear on a relatively flat plane of aesthetics. This is good for a lot of things—fair art criticism among them—but it tends to hurt our understanding, as viewers, of where the...

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