Ellen Gallagher - New Paintings

Conglimpscious, 1997
Oil ink and paper on canvas
120 x 96 inches (305 x 244 cm)


Download Press Release PDF (77 Kb)

Reception for the artist, March 7, 6 - 8pm

Gagosian Gallery is proud to present an exhibition of new paintings by Ellen Gallagher. Gallagher continues to explore a dialogue between image and content. Using a vocabulary of marks and symbols, the paintings articulate the origination of language, illustrating its innocent-destructive duality in a single icon. Gallagher's art speaks ironically through an aesthetic with an acerbic bite. Neville Wakefield describes this seeming contradiction about her work:

Set adrift within these fields of uninterrupted pleasure, the eye tends to wander before being pulled into dense patterns of drawn marks. Only then does it become apparent that interwoven within the loose limbed grids are subtle inquisitions into Gallagher's own identity. Nestled into the quilted backgrounds are the faces of an itinerant minstrel show, a delirious jumping' jive of thick grinning lips, whites of eyes, and pickaninny heads. Beautifully drawn, the effect is nonetheless disarming - as though the artist had decided to open a suitcase full of forbidden history and dump the contents in the pure space of abstract minimalism.