Julian Schnabel - Big Girl Paintings
Untitled (Girl with no eyes), 2001
Oil and wax on canvas in artist's frame
122 x 110 1/2 inches (309.9 x 280.7 cm)

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New York Reception for the artist: Thursday, March 14, 2002 6 – 8pm
Beverly Hills Reception for the artist: Thursday, March 21, 2002 6 – 8pm

Gagosian Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of thirteen new paintings by Julian Schnabel.

In 1987, Schnabel visited a thrift store where he acquired several small paintings; one in particular stuck in the artist's mind—a painting depicting a "classic" American female youth: blonde, cute, clean-cut. In 2001, this painting would become the foundation for Schnabel's new body of work.

Julian Schnabel has taken the young girl's image and created a series of portraits that are parenthetically titled Big Girl Paintings. The first thing one notices about these girls is that they have been stripped of their sight, they have no eyes. Ironically, the artist explains their absence as a means to force the viewer to look at the paintings and not the eyes.

The painting's canvases range from seven to thirteen feet in height. Their monumental size envelops the spectator and fills our peripheral vision. The surfaces of the canvas are heavily worked. The medium of paint and wax creates a luscious visceral surface. This technique lies in stark contrast to the lack of sentimentality of the imagery, creating an unexpected harmony.

Julian Schnabel's work is included in major collections such as the Eli Broad Collection, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Tate Gallery, London and Centre Georges Pompidou.

This suite of paintings will be exhibited concurrently at Gagosian Gallery, Chelsea, in New York and Gagosian Gallery in Los Angeles.

A fully illustrated catalogue with an essay by Robert Rosenblum will accompany the exhibitions.

For more information please contact the gallery.