Alan Shields "Something Goin' On & On"

Van Doren Waxter

poster for Alan Shields "Something Goin' On & On"

This event has ended.

This solo exhibition of paintings, sculptures and works on paper by the late Alan Shields (1944-2005), is curated by Jill Brienza. This is the first selected survey of Shields’ work in New York in eleven years and inaugurates the gallery’s representation of the artist’s estate. Realizing the full potential of his materials, Shields painted, dyed, wove, sewed, and sculpted his works into interactive forms, both conceptually and literally. The media used do not merely rest on the surface, but are physically embedded within the canvas or paper. Using brilliant color on un-stretched canvases and handmade paper often with impasto-like texture, Shields employed sewing as a means of drawing as well as carefully draped yarn and rope, often studded with glass beads. A sense of history and the visible trace of the artist’s hand in his mottled dye and quilting techniques act as a nod to his Midwestern upbringing.

Both Shields’ use of color and form epitomize the American post-Minimalism movement. Emblematic of the late ‘60s/early ‘70s freewheeling style, Shields’ semiotic palette includes spirals, mazes, pyramids, mandalas, anthropomorphic and natural forms. Equally dense and expansive, Shields’ work elicits movement through trance-like use of color and pattern. It was common for Shields to strategically position his sculptural pieces in front of a hanging work, forcing the viewer to contemplate the hanging works literally through three-dimensional works. By creating this visually layered and interactive experience, Shields generates an active dialogue between the sculptural works, the flat works and the viewer.

[Image: Alan Shields "Diet Limca (detail)" (1980-81) acrylic and thread on cotton belting with aluminum, 77.5 x 77.5 in. "Single Swing Encounter (detail)" (1980-81) acrylic, thread on canvas, 109 x 115 in.]



from April 28, 2011 to June 24, 2011

Opening Reception on 2011-04-28 from 18:00 to 20:00


Alan Shields

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