“I want to paint the now,” says Alex Katz (b. 1927) “That’s the immediate presence. And that’s what consciousness is.”
Katz rose to prominence in New York City in the 1950s. Adverse to abstraction, Katz invented new ways to paint the human figure. “When you start with realistic,” Katz explains. “It’s like opening Pandora’s box.”
His cinematic framing combined with crisp brushstrokes distinguished Katz as an artist apart from the passing fads or trends of the art world.
Katz is featured in the permanent collections of several prominent collections, including the MoMA, the Whitney, and the Smithsonian. He is represented by numerous international galleries.
In 2007, he received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Design.
Alex Katz cannot be classified into any particular art movement. Not quite Pop Art, not quite New Realism, Katz has blazed a trail entirely his own.
It takes radical alchemy to imbue paper with the physicality of steel. Richard Serra (b. 1939) does just that in his etching Paths and Edges #13. In the early 1970’s, around the same time that he took up printmaking, Serra created his first monumental steel sculptures. The decades-spanning series would come to define post-war, Post-Minimalist art. Sculptors often use printmaking to conceptualize work, but Serra makes prints in reaction to his completed sculptures. The artist sees the practice as “…a method for me to bring sculpture to definition, i.e., to understand the work in totality after its completion.” That’s how his prints so viscerally capture the simultaneous motion and inertia of his monolithic sculptures. Scroll down to view Paths and Edges #13 from the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art collection.
“Shape and color are my two strong things,” said Ellsworth Kelly (1923-2015). The New York artist’s position on his own work was as simple as that, but his influence on 20th century art was considerably more complex. Kelly was a key player in the evolution of hard-edge painting, Color Field painting, minimalism, and Pop Art, though he never willingly assumed the mantle of a particular movement. Quietly and diligently, he observed the built environment around him and captured his shifting perceptions on canvas and paper.
Kelly’s lithograph Blue and Orange and Green is poetic in its simplicity, a visual haiku consisting of three echoed forms in bright hues. “I wanted to give people joy,” Kelly said. His print, which is new to the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art Collection, is sure to brighten your day—and perhaps your living room.
“Very quickly, a painting is turned into a facsimile of itself,” said Robert Rauschenberg (1925-2008). “One becomes so familiar with it that one recognizes it without looking at it.” He could’ve been talking about Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, which makes a cameo in his 1996 intaglio printBanco, from Ground Rules. The portrait is so rooted in the modern cultural consciousness that we can instantly conjure it in our mind’s eye.
Thus, it’s a perfect tool for exploring the concept of authorship: the painting appears next to a window emblazoned with the words “YOUR NAME HERE.” By presenting the world’s most iconic painting beside advertising lingo, the postmodern master asks whether true ownership of an image is possible in the age of mass media. Learn more about the print below, and browse more works by Rauschenberg.
Donald Sultan (b. 1951) emerged as a master of the New Image movement in the 1970’s, producing elegant, minimalist imagery using industrial materials that were decidedly postminimal. Abstracted blooms are an iconic motif in his work. The new screen print in our collection offers a prime example of Sultan’s style, characterized by stark, black forms amid vibrant fields of color. In the print, tar and flocking enhance the dark fields, transforming them into infinite chasms with powerful visual gravity.
Scroll down to view our new Sultan screen print—along with a full bouquet of the artist’s flower compositions—in the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection, and click here to browse all available works.
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.
“I thinkthat if you can turn off the mind and look only with the eyes, ultimately everything becomes abstract,” said Ellsworth Kelly (1923 – 2015).Kelly’s abstraction is rooted in the real world.His strong sense of form and color has often been tied to his time in the military, affinity for bird watching, and observations of nature. Although simplistic in imagery, Kelly’s work holds a certain tension.“I think what we all want from art is a sense of fixity, a sense of opposing the chaos of daily living,” said Kelly. “This an illusion, of course. Canvas rots. Paint changes color. In a sense, what I’ve tried to capture is the reality of flux, to keep art an open, incomplete situation, to get at the rapture ofseeing.”
Kelly was a pioneer of Color Field painting and minimalism whose influence extends across the second half the 20th century to the present.This is exemplified by the story behind Kelly’s Untitled (1983), a hand-signed lithograph that was included in the Eight by Eight to Celebrate the Temporary Contemporary suite. The portfolio features artwork by eight prominent artists, and was used as a fundraising vehicle for the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Los Angeles. The artists who participated were Kelly, Richard Diebenkorn, Sam Francis, David Hockney, Robert Rauschenberg, Niki de Saint Phalle, Jean Tinguely, and Andy Warhol. This iconic collection is a testament to the cultural milieu of the United States in the 1980’s. This is a rare opportunity to own a piece of this illustrious history.
“All our projects are like fabulous expeditions,” said Christo (b.1935). “The story of each project is unique. Our projects have no precedent.” It’s a bold statement to make, but hard to deny when you look at the staggering output of Christo and his late, great partner Jeanne-Claude (1935-2009). Starting in the early 1960’s, they set out to wrap the world in flowing cloth. They’ve managed to cover quite a lot of ground since then, from Central Park to the Reichstag. Three new prints in our collection depict wrapped objects that are not monumental in size—but just as culturally significant. Wrapped Telephone shows an L.M. Ericsson design that’s iconic of early 20th century communication. Wrapped Motorcycle/Sidecar and Wrapped Automobile capture two symbols of freewheeling American innnovation. Both of the new prints come with complimentary gifts, pictured below. It’s a unique opportunity to “unwrap” a Christo this holiday season.
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.