Audrey Gair “07/04/22”

King's Leap

poster for Audrey Gair “07/04/22”
[Image: Audrey Gair "07/04/22 4" (2022) oil on linen, 36 x 48 in.]

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King’s Leap presents 07/04/22, Audrey Gair’s second solo exhibition at King’s Leap Fine Arts. Across her fragmented and kaleidoscopic body of work, Gair institutes her neo-pointillistic abstract style, referencing the construction of the picture plane, art history, and a collage-like approach to social realism.

Caught between the freedom of representation and the confines of the canvas, Gair’s practice has often been indebted to Modernist influences, such as Mondrian and Klee. With this new body of work, Gair turns to landscape painting through her re-interpretation of Impressionism. Inspired by the period’s depictions of urban leisure, Gair has become interested in what a weekend away from the city means for her and her peers. By directly pointing to the Fourth of July in her title, she references the American pastoralists of the 19th century, finding similarities between the conquest of the American landscape and the desires of New York yuppies to escape. The result presents the vantage of a contemporary flaneur: surveying metropolitan ennui in off time caught between work, commutes, and screens.

The exhibition begins with three works in the upstairs gallery, all of which are titled after the exhibition. The paintings, which take place at her friends’ home in a small town in New Jersey, are different vantage points of her long weekend. In 07/04/22 4, skinny trees foreground a natural landscape of a park. A group of people sitting by a river is visible beyond, with lace scraps scattered underfoot, representing the visitors’ belongings. Lace, a recurring motif across her paintings, reappears in 07/04/22 1 as the silhouettes of two people at a cafe table set up outside, surrounded by sheer black ovals. Gair has derived these shapes through her experience of sun blindness and flickering sunlit leaves, wherein the resulting obscured picture is borne from looking too closely. Like a camera whose lens continues to tighten, the series concludes with 07/04/22 2, where the viewer comes face to face with a butterfly, sheer against its faint red outline, as though the sun is peeking through its wings. Gair compresses space and obstructs her compositions to remind the viewer of their presence in front of a painting.

Across the exhibition, Gair distorts both depth of field and narrative pictorial space. Time of Day presents the glow of the city beyond the landscape of a forest, perhaps the view on her return home from her short trip. Gair’s overlapping circles, which flatten perspective using varying degrees of color, dissolve the distance between these two locations. In Skyline, Gair has rendered a cityscape, stylistically stolen from a paint-and-sip-esque one-shot painting, across a dark brown backdrop. Before a viewer can lose themselves in the scene, Gair has collaged hole-punched paper painted in gouache, which diagonally cuts across the painting. By bisecting the canvas of Skyline, Gair grounds the audience in the same consideration of surface and process she confronts.

In Work From Home, Gair turns her gaze toward interiors, the studio, and modes of production. Three flowers are foregrounded: The first, a poppy that grew in her backyard rendered in photo-realistic detail; the second, an imaginary flower painted like the Statue of Liberty and a virus spore; and the third, taken from Florine Stettheimer’s Family Portrait No. 2, 1933. All three flowers, which bloom from a small vase off-center from a rudimentary drawing of a four-poster bed, present different modes of rendering. Work From Home serves as a frame for Gair to radically scrapbook influences and everyday life into an unconscious collection. In doing so, Gair extends the vocabulary of the still-life, arresting the wonders of an unnatural world.

Gair’s irreverence to a fixed approach pushes toward a dissolution of the personal, material, and historical. Though she implements the strategies of various art movements, she is never tethered to one perspective. Much like the subject of her paintings, the ‘day-tripper,’ Gair condenses the inside with the outside, the natural with the metropolitan, and the modernist with the contemporary.

Audrey Gair (b. 1992, Maimi, FL) is an artist living in New York. Recent exhibitions include a three-person at Galerie Crèvecœur (Paris, FR), a two-person exhibition at Sebastian Gladstone (Los Angeles, CA), and King’s Leap Fine Arts (New York, NY). Selected group exhibitions include Clearing (Comporta, PT), Galerie Hussenot (Paris, FR), In Lieu (Los Angeles, CA), Fall River MOCA, (Fall River, MA), and Gern en Regalia (New York, NY). In 2022, King’s Leap Editions published the artist’s first book, She is This, a collaboration with writer Delali Ayivor.



from October 26, 2022 to December 18, 2022

Opening Reception on 2022-10-26 from 18:00 to 21:00


Audrey Gair

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