NYSS requires all persons entering the building (Gallery visitors are exempt) to complete the daily sign-in form: CLICK HERE
NYSS requires all persons entering the building (Gallery visitors are exempt) to complete the daily sign-in form: CLICK HERE
x
< Back To Exhibitions

Mernet Larsen: The Geometric Figure Paintings

 

Mernet Larsen, Aw, 2003, acrylic, tracing paper, oil on canvas, 40″ x 66″. Courtesy of the Artist.

Mernet Larsen’s debut New York solo exhibition, which opened at the New York Studio School January 3, 2005, continues through February 5.

Larsen, who was born in Houghton, Michigan, in 1940, lives and works in Tampa, Florida, where she was professor of art at the University of South Florida from 1967-2003.

The works on show at the Studio School are her recent geometric figure paintings, a departure from the abstract idiom for which she was well known in the 1980s and 1990s.  Inspired by sources as disparate as the constructivist paintings of El Lissitsky, Moghul miniatures, Chinese landscape painting, and Japanese bunraku puppet theatre, Larsen works in acrylic on canvas with copious use of collage.

This is an exhibition that will likely be visited very quickly by some and very slowly by others.  At first the body of work appears entirely humorous, with absurdist situations depicted in reductive, almost cartoonish figuration.  A couple bend over to admire a baby in a piece entitled “Aw,” (2002-03) while in “Ambush,” (2003-04) unreined horses and carts approach comically unthreatening gunmen in a scene closer to a video game than a even a spaghetti Western.

On closer examination, however, these motifs turn out to be the occasion of pictorially complex games with multi-view perspective and with the interchange between schematic and naturalistic modes.  On formal terms the works are extremely heterogeneous, with radically different issues addressed from canvas to canvas, arousing corresponding complex humors and moods.

Artist Statement

Resume

Snapshots From NYSS

Support the New York Studio School.

Each gift matters. Become a beacon for art education and talent.