press release

Monique van Genderen

D'Amelio Gallery is pleased to present the first solo exhibition in New York of Los Angeles-based painter Monique van Genderen, who has exhibited in both Europe and Los Angeles. Often working in the large-scale formats of murals and installation, for this exhibition van Genderen is focused on a body of medium to large-scale paintings, offering a format that is more directly related to human scale.

The layers of Monique van Genderen's paintings interlace a painterly elegance with a complexity and assertiveness of composition. As if shuffling transparencies, the artist builds her collage-like works from overlapping blocks of color that root her works with a flat, graphic formality. Gestural, calligraphic brushstrokes challenge this gravity, yet van Genderen renders these drips and bleeds with a deliberateness that also questions their own haphazardness. In such a way, van Genderen asserts and removes herself as technician from her compositions with pictorial riddles and contradictions. While the openness of exposed canvas and lightness of brushwork invites the viewer into some works, others appear defensive, more reflective than absorptive, demonstrating a comprehensive range. At once transparent and reflective, Monique van Genderen's mood-shifting paintings are enigmatic and rich beneath their flat veneers.

Monique van Genderen received her MFA from the California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, and is represented by Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects. Van Genderen will have a solo exhibition at Susanne Vielmetter in the fall of 2013. Recent solo exhibitions of her work have been held at the Kunstverein Heilbronn, Germany; and Galerie Michael Janssen, Berlin, Germany, UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH; the Chinati Foundation, Marfa, TX; the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA;. Van Genderen's work was included in the exhibition "Ambigu" at the Kunstmuseum St. Gallen, Switzerland; the Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Art Unlimited, Art Basel 37, Switzerland; and the Corcoran Biennial, Washington D.C.


Yayoi Kusama: Drawings from the mid-50s

D'Amelio Galley is pleased to present "Drawings from the mid-50s", an exhibition of works on paper by acclaimed Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. The exhibition brings together a group of 12 museum quality works dating from 1953 - 1957, all originally from the extraordinary collection of Richard Castellane – Kusama's New York dealer in the mid-60s. Coinciding with the final stop of the Tate Modern's traveling retrospective currently on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art, this show provides an opportunity to see Kusama's recurring themes and motifs revealed through the intimate act of drawing.

Born in Japan in 1929, Kusama came to the United States in 1957 and soon moved to New York in 1958 to pursue a career as an artist. With her she brought a substantial group of works on paper, made while living in her native home. Small in scale and comprised of tempera, pastel, watercolor and ball point, these works were the artistic foundation that Kusama was able to take with her on her journey. The works in this exhibition will be grouped loosely around themes that preoccupied the artist during these seminal years. The earliest influences can be seen in works such as "Archaic Dance Costume" and "The Island in the Sea No. 1" that include tendrils and anthropomorphic shapes hinting at Juan Miro and surrealism's effect on the artist while studying in Japan. Orb-like forms floating on black backgrounds, such as "Snow Ball in Sunset" and "The Flower (No. 2)", suggest Kusama's preoccupation with infinite space and the coalescing of light and form. The vertical net columns "Column (No. GOL)" and "Column No.1" present the artist's interest in continuation and infinity as her motifs seem to extend above and below the page. "Nets A.S.", the latest work in the show, and "Deprivation Net" set the stage for her exploration into repetitive monochrome "Infinity Net" paintings which by the early 60s establish Kusama's first major international success.

Yayoi Kusama has exhibited widely throughout Europe, the United States, Asia and the Middle East and is one of the most celebrated and vigorous artists working today. The courage and ambition that, as a young artist, motivated her to leave her traditional Japanese society, remains an inspiration. The opportunity to see the earliest works, made before her New York emersion, provides a unique view into the ideas, emotions and subjects of one of today's leading visual voices.