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Betty Cuningham Gallery: RUDOLF DE CRIGNIS | STANLEY LEWIS - 22 Oct 2016 to 22 Dec 2016

Current Exhibition

22 Oct 2016 to 22 Dec 2016
Tuesday - Saturday, 10 am - 6 pm
Betty Cuningham Gallery
15 Rivington Street
New York, NY
New York
North America
T: +1 212 242 2772
F: +1 212 242 5959

Rudolf de Crignis in his New York studio, 2005
Photo credit ©Stefan Kraus, Cologne

Artists in this exhibition: Rudolf de Crignis, Stanley Lewis


OCTOBER 22 - DECEMBER 22, 2016

Betty Cuningham Gallery is pleased to open 14 Paintings, an exhibition of work by the late Rudolf de Crignis.  This is the artist’s first exhibition at Betty Cuningham Gallery located at 15 Rivington Street, New York.  An opening reception will be held on Saturday, October 22, from 4 – 7 PM.

The exhibition is composed of 6 works on canvas and 8 works on paper, all considered ‘paintings’ by de Crignis. All were completed in the early-to-mid 1990s during a watershed moment in the New York artist’s career when he abandoned his long-standing interest in the organic or figurative qualities of his subjects in favor of a reduced, geometric style.  Extraneous elements were pushed to the edge of the picture plane and by the 1990s had disappeared. His works became more meditative. The color became denser and darker in tone; de Crignis turned to oil paint over tempera for its translucent qualities.

To create the works in this exhibition, de Crignis first coated his canvases with layers of gesso, and then using thin veils of oil paint in multiple layers and colors, he painted across the surface with a wide brush – first horizontally and then vertically.  Eventually the accumulation of the strokes created a network of fine lines in the paint that allowed the initial layers to shine through.  The layering technique functioned “to build up a certain space for the space and the light” ensuring “that everything in the painting is visible… The whole journey of the painting is open.”  The works on paper provide a more intimate view but follow the same journey: the lines are drawn or incised, ruled or free hand, effaced or not, into watercolor, or tempera. 
De Crignis (born Winterthur, Switzerland, 1948; died New York, 2006) studied at the Form und Farbe School for Art and Media Design, Zürich. In 1976, he exhibited in the Swiss Pavilion at the Venice Biennale. His work has been the focus of numerous solo museum exhibitions, including Kunsthalle Winterthur, 1995; Artothek, Cologne, 2001; Kunstmuseum Bonn, 2003; Swiss National Library, Bern, 2006; Haus Konstruktiv, Zürich, 2009; and  Berkeley Art Museum, 2013. His works are in numerous public collections, including: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Harvard University Art Museums, Boston, MA; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT; Berkeley Art Museum, CA; Indianapolis Museum of Art, IN; Aargauer Kunsthaus, Aarau, Switzerland; Kunsthaus Zürich, Switzerland; Lenbachhaus, Munich, Germany; Kunstmuseum Bonn, Germany; and Kolumba, Cologne, Germany.



OCTOBER 22 - DECEMBER 22, 2016

The greatness of jazz is making so much perfection and beauty from a relatively simple song. With landscapes, the perfection is there already.  Then you try to come up with a recognizable tune.  My brief encounters with John Cage in college gave me the idea that everything in my sight is good and helpful – accept everything.
 ~Stanley Lewis

Betty Cuningham Gallery is pleased to open an exhibition of the Works on Paper by Stanley Lewis in SIDECAR (the Gallery’s next-door space). This will be the artist’s second show with the Gallery and will run concurrently with Stanley Lewis: The Way Things Are, Works from the William Louis-Dreyfus Foundation at the New York Studio School (October 3 – November 13, 2016). The artist will be present for an opening reception in SIDECAR on Saturday October 22, from 4 -7 PM.

The Gallery exhibition will include ten works on paper, all drawn on site: his backyard, the train station, his studio or the kitchen. Each is a modest feat endowed with time-consuming labor and incredible ambition. Stanley admits, “It almost kills me!”
The proposition for Lewis is that all painting is abstract. A problem solver by his own admission, Lewis works for years on a drawing attempting to grasp the detail - “the little things” - while holding on to the surface of the drawing.  In the current exhibition, the works on paper reveal his cut-and-assemble process that results in his bas-relief, bumpy drawings. 
Stanley Lewis was born in Somerville, NJ in 1941.  He received a BA from Wesleyan University in 1963 and an MFA from Yale University in 1967 as a Danforth Fellow. Throughout his career, Lewis has held posts as teacher and critic at various institutions including Kansas City Art Institute, Smith College, and American University. In 2005, Lewis received a Guggenheim Fellowship and in 2015 he received an Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work can be found in numerous public collections including the National Academy Museum, New York, NY; Hollins University Gallery, Roanoke, VA; the Collections of Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Geneva, NY; Indiana University Art Museum, Bloomington, IN; and the Watkins Collection at American University, Washington, DC, among others. In 2007, the Katzen Art Center at American University, Washington, DC hosted a retrospective of the artist’s work. Lewis lives and works in Leeds, MA.


Betty Cuningham Gallery is located at:
15 Rivington Street, b/t Bowery and Chrystie Street, New York, NY 10002
T: 212-242-2772
Public Transportation: F train to Second Ave, 6 Train to Spring Street
Gallery Hours: Tues – Sat, 10am – 6pm.

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