Tuesday, March 22, 7pm
Visiting Artist Lecture
Oxbow School, Napa, CA
Since participating in the early years of the Pattern and Decoration Movement in the 1970’s, Robert Kushner has continued to address controversial issues involving decoration. Kushner draws from a unique range of influences, and his work combines organic representational elements with abstracted geometric forms in a way that is both decorative and modernist. He has said, “Decoration, an abjectly pejorative dismissal for many, is a very big, somewhat defiant declaration for me . . . . The eye can wander, the mind think unencumbered through visual realms that are expansively and emotionally rich. Decoration has always had its own agenda, the sincere and unabashed offering of pleasure and solace.” On his collages specifically, Kushner writes: “I want to make [my pieces] as diffused and confusing as possible. I want the viewer to time travel as broadly as possible. And so I include papers from as many languages, cultures, times, and places as I can which become a part of the content of the work. In all likelihood no one individual could read all the languages in each collage. Instead of concrete cognition we arrive at a mist of unknowing.”
Kushner’s work has been exhibited extensively in the United States, Europe, and Japan and has been included three times in the Whitney Biennial and twice at the Biennale in Venice. He was the subject of solo exhibitions at both the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Brooklyn Museum. A mid-career retrospective of his work was organized by the Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art. Kushner’s works are included in many prominent public collections including The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Whitney Museum of American Art, NY; National Gallery of Art, DC; Corcoran Gallery of Art, DC; Tate Gallery, London; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu; Denver Art Museum; Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence; J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles; Museum Ludwig, St. Petersburg; and Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Image: Robert Kushner, Large Succulent Garden, 2014, oil and acrylic on joined paper, 54 3/4 x 33 1/2 inches
Robert Kushner: Paintings & Works on Paper
March 12 – April 23, 2016
Please join Jerald Melberg Gallery for an exhibition of new paintings and works on paper by Robert Kushner. In this recent body of work, Kushner continues expanding the style he has worked in for decades: boldly colored, opulent paintings patterned with flowers and plant forms. The exhibition also includes a series of mixed media collages composed of elements from varied times and worldly locales, overlaid with minimalist flora forms.
Coffee & Conversation
Saturday, March 12 at 11:00am
Jerald Melberg Gallery
625 South Sharon Amity Road
Charlotte, NC 28211
(top) Robert Kushner, Johnny Jump Up I, collage, ink and acrylic, 10 x 10 inches, 2014
(center) Robert Kushner, Sungarden II, oil, acrylic, gold leaf on canvas, 30 x 60 inches, 2015
(bottom) Robert Kushner, Huntington Library Cactus Garden II, collage, ink, gold leaf and acrylic, 30 x 37 inches, 2014
Listen to Robert Kushner’s Gallery Talk a Jerald Melberg Gallery:
Motifs can remain the same, but intentions often change over time. The mood of 2014 becomes different in 2015. “Tenderness and Thorns” mellows to “Tenderness.” “Cacti and Camellias” turns into only pure white camellias. Here is a brand new (nearly finished) painting: “Tenderness,” 102″x 256″, oil and acrylic on seven panels.