“Meaning is in us already, waiting to wake up,” said Lesley Dill (b. 1950). “I feel grateful for waking up through words.” The New York artist works in a wide variety of media—sculpture, performance, printmaking, drawing, and photography—but each work explores the power of language. In Dill’s 2005 lithograph collage, Woman With Hindi Healing Dress, a figure wears a swirling skirt covered in cascading Hindi text. Even if you can’t read the language, the threaded compositional elements and serene palette communicate everything you need to know. This is an artwork imbued with the spirit of a healer.
“I like to use light as a material, but my medium is actually perception,” said James Turrell (b. 1943). “I want you to sense yourself sensing —to see yourself seeing.” Turrell’s exhibition at the Guggenheim in 2013 was his first solo display in New York City since the 1980’s, and he was ready to catch Manhattan’s eye. In his skyscape titled Aten Reign, the Light and Space artist transformed the museum’s iconic rotunda into an enormous oculus that could only be viewed from the ground floor. The installation emanated the full spectrum of color, hypnotically shifting from hue to hue.
“Aten Reign, a series of suspended oval armatures and sheer scrims that span the entire cavity of the building, is so overwhelming, meditative, beautiful and suited to the space that you actually forget you’re in the Guggenheim, where it’s almost architecturally impossible to do so,” wrote Times Quotidian of the work. Turrell joked that Frank Lloyd Wright might not have approved of this radical alteration of the structure’s design. His revolutionary but ephemeral artistic statement is captured in this large-scale archival pigment print. Like the masterwork it depicts, this 44-by-65-inch piece has its own gravitational pull.
Can you find Zane Bennett Contemporary Art? Using aerial photos sourced from Google Earth, Lu Xinjian (b. 1977) meticulously depicted the streets of Santa Fe in acrylic on linen. City DNA SantaFe is part of a larger series by the Chinese artist, where he reduces far-flung metropolises into densely patterned abstractions. Lu Xinjian hasn’t visited many of the places that appear in the expansive City DNA series. He completes each immense painting in his studio in China, traveling the globe through his brush and imagination. From Beijing to New York City to Amsterdam, Lu Xinjian precisely and energetically captures each city’s visual rhythm.
Click here to browse the complete Zane Bennett Contemporary Art collection.
“Art is my way of speaking about things that are unspeakable, it is my truest voice and my strongest form of resistance,” Wangechi Mutu told Artnet. The Nairobi and New York-based artist explores questions of female representation, black identity, environmental catastrophe, and cultural trauma in her semi-figurative artworks. Her densely layered, oddly gnarled compositions show hybridized female figures who are simultaneously exquisite and grotesque, fantastical and forlorn.
Mutu’s collagraph, Second Born, is new to the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. Mutu created it with Pace Editions in 2013, the same year as her first solo exhibition in the United States, Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey at the Nasher Museum of Art. The mixed-media piece is a powerful example of Mutu’s contemporary myth-making. By interweaving fact with fiction, she opens up possibilities for a pantheon of symbolic female characterizations, markedly different from those that appear in either classical history or popular culture.
“Being Latin American, you are made up of so many fragments from different cultures,” Arturo Herrera (b. 1959) told Art21 in a documentary called Play. The sequence shows the Venezuela-born, New York and Berlin-based artist sifting through an enormous pile of clippings from paintings, drawings, and printed materials. These are the puzzle pieces for his abstract collages, which incorporate undulating forms and dazzling colors into compositions that almost seem to emit an exuberant hum.
Herrera’s editioned, mixed-media collage Johannesis one such visual chorus. Created over two years in collaboration with the printers at Pace Editions, Johannes is a tour de force of printmaking experimentation. This mixed-media collage is composed of more than 100 separately printed elements in various printmaking techniques, including etching, aquatint, linocut, letterpress, collagraph, silkscreen and digital pigment print. Watch this video from Pace that details the fascinating process, and learn more about the print below.
Arturo Herrera, Johannes, mixed-media collage with various printmaking techniques and felt,
62.5 x 39.5 in., 2012
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You could win a work of art by Manuel Amorim (b. 1950)! Enter our free raffle for a chance to add his woodcut Nuit Mauve to your collection. Fragmented and existential, the Lisbon-born artist’s work centers on shadowy silhouettes moving solo through the universe.
Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson (b. 1967) turns a city skyline on its head in his mercurial artwork Your reversed Berlin sphere. The larger image shows Berlin from the window of Eliasson’s studio, with a smaller, inverted version of the same view embedded in its center. The artist uses color-effect filter glass to imbue the underlying C-Print with chameleonic properties: as the light shifts, the central disc reflects a vivid rainbow of yellows, oranges, pinks, purples and blues. It’s as though this iconic metropolis has cast its reflection in a glacial lake at sunset. The glass also acts as a mirror, allowing the viewer to glimpse their reflection hanging above the scene.
Eliasson’s art is driven by his interests in perception, movement, embodied experience, and feelings of self. He is perhaps best known for his gargantuan artwork The Weather Project in the Turbine Hall of Tate Modern, London. The 2003 installation turned the 35,520-square-foot exhibition space into a cradle for a sculptural depiction of the glowing sun. “Eliasson views the weather – wind, rain, sun – as one of the few fundamental encounters with nature that can still be experienced in the city,” writes Tate Modern. “Eliasson has sought to bring a part of London into the building, and through the experience and memory of the work, a part of it is taken back out into the city by the viewer.” Your reversed Berlin sphere evokes an elemental experience of another iconic European city. It’s an ever-shifting window into Berlin, with infinite visual appeal.
Olafur Eliasson Your reversed Berlin sphere
Color-print on Fuji crystal archive II paper (matte)
mounted on dibond, color-effect filter glass, glass, wood frame
35.5 x 35.5 in
Click here to browse the complete Zane Bennett Contemporary collection.
Mika Rottenberg (b. 1976, Argentina) and Reynier Leyva Novo (b. 1983, Cuba) are hardly emerging artists. They’ve both exhibited at the Venice Biennale, and have artwork in the permanent collections of renowned institutions across the world. Recently, each of them have marked yet another important milestone in their artistic careers: they’ve landed major solo displays.
Rottenberg’s self-titled exhibition at the Bass Museum in Miami Beach (on view through April 30) focuses on elucidating the mechanics of late-stage, global capitalism by way of absurd and poetic comparisons. Novo mounted a solo presentation of his work at The Armory Show in New York early this year, hot off the heels of his contribution to the Cuban Pavilion at the 57th Venice Biennale last summer. His work challenges ideology and symbols of power, uprooting notions of an individual’s ability to affect change. Rottenberg and Novo’s respective artistic quests ring clear in these works on paper from the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. Consider acquiring art by two rising creative luminaries!
Akira Yamaguchi (b. 1969, Japan) is the kind of artist who lands in a circle of luminaries wherever he goes. Yamaguchi designed the cover art for the album V by the nu-jazz music duo United Future Organization, and illustrated the book Chronicles of My Life: An American in the Heart of Japan by Donald Keene. He’s good friends with the perennially hip director Sofia Coppola, who cast him as the bellhop in her Oscar-winning movie Lost in Translation. The artist’s densely detailed paintings of fantastical cityscapes, which modernize the multi-tiered aesthetic of Japanese Edo period pictures, would make perfect companion art for Coppola’s sprawling but hyperspecific film. Several prints of Yamaguchi’s images are part of the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. Send your eyes on a visual walkabout!
Judy Chicago is having a moment. In the past few months, she’s been featured in an Artsy podcast, profiled in an article for W Magazine, and hailed as “The Godmother” in a recent piece by New York Times Magazine. Here’s an excerpt:
Once your eye is trained to see Chicago’s imprint, it is everywhere, and unmistakable. It’s in Petra Collins’s menstruation-positive T-shirts; in the forthcoming installation on Sunset Boulevard in L.A. by Zoe Buckman of a huge uterus drawn in neon tubing crowned with boxing gloves; in the pink “pussy hats” that are worn in opposition to Trump’s election. Images like these — symbolically overt, politically and anatomically in-your-face, forcing a public confrontation with sexism — are all descended from Chicago’s imagination.
Another article that appeared in the New York Times a few days ago analyzed the tumultuous legacy of critical perspectives on Chicago’s most iconic work, The Dinner Party:
[Chicago] said that despite the art media’s early disparagement of her work, her way of overcoming the disappointment was to go into her studio and continue making art. She found a supportive community in Southern California’s Ferus boys, notably the American artist and sculptor Billy Al Bengston, from whom she said she learned quite a bit. “Early on, he told me: ‘Never read reviews. Just count the column inches and the number of pictures,’ advice I heeded for many years. And given the vicissitudes of my career, it was really good advice.”
Chicago’s fiery feminist statement on the rebirth of humanity, Birth Tear / Tear, appeared at our sister gallery form & concept when Chicago visited last February. Watch our Q&A with her here, and inquire about the piece below.
Afro-Cuban artist Roberto Diago (b. 1971) recently unveiled La Historia Recordada, a solo exhibition at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art in Charleston, SC. The show highlights Diago’s substantial contributions to political and cultural conversations within Cuba—and larger dialogues about race and history on the global stage. Hyperallergic reflected on his influence in a recent story, excerpted here:
Diago’s work is often a direct criticism of racism in Cuba and explores the roots and role of slavery in Cuban history and culture. His work frequently contains found materials from neighborhoods in Havana near his home and studio. Raw materials such as wood, metal, and textiles make up much of his work — often these materials contain traces of their former uses, such as paint or building materials. Diago tracks a lineage of painterly abstraction and other forms in modern Cuban art, condensing them into a body of work that explores the vestiges of slavery and segregation in contemporary Cuban life.
Diago’s mixed media work El Mar Es mi Frontera (The Sea Is my Border) is a highlight of the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. Look below for more artwork by legendary Latin American artists in the gallery.
Add a piece of art history to your walls this winter! There’s a new Special Offerssection on the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art website, featuring exceptional pricing on works by legendary artists. Scroll down to view prints by Pop Art icons and Pop-inspired artists from the new collection, and make sure to bookmark the Special Offers page for future additions.
Starting Black Friday (Nov. 24) and extending through Cyber Monday (Nov. 26), enjoy a 10% discount on any acquisition from Zane Bennett Contemporary Art. Scroll down to see our latest offerings, and browse the complete collection on our website.
You might say that Pop artist Robert Indiana (b. 1928) lived the American Dream. Throughout the artist’s early childhood in Indiana, his family lived in poverty. They moved 21 times before Indiana turned 17, and his mother worked as a waitress in greasy spoon diners to make ends meet. Flash forward to the late 1950’s, and Indiana was a 20-something living in New York City and cavorting with the likes of Andy Warhol and Wynn Chamberlain. His hard-edged oil compositions bearing bright colors, provocative phrases and culturally significant numbers had caught the eye of the contemporary art world. In 1965, Indiana designed a Christmas card for MoMA featuring scarlet, stacked letters that spelled out “LOVE.” It would become his most iconic image, landing on a USPS postage stamp in 1973.
A few years before he created the LOVE image, Indiana looked back on his path to success with the first painting in his American Dream series. The same composition appears in Indiana’s 1997 serigraph Tilt from The American Dream, which is new to the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. In the image, highly personal symbolism mingles with universal markers of Americanism.
The circles and stars that appear throughout the piece riff on advertising aesthetics of the period. In the black and yellow circle at top left, the numbers reference highways he roamed as a young man (including Route 66). The phrases “TAKE ALL” and “THE AMERICAN DREAM” represent an industrious but viciously competitive national ethos. In the bottom left circle, the word “TILT” evokes the pinball machines that Indiana encountered in the diners where his mother worked, and later in dive bars that he frequented. When paired with the other words in the tableau, “TILT” throws the egalitarian premise of The American Dream into question. This was the first of nine images in the American Dream series, created between 1961 and 2001. Tilt from the American Dream represents of Indiana’s epic, career-spanning exploration of the promises and pitfalls of American idealism.