FOUR WORKS, FOUR YEARS, EIGHT WEEKS: Julian Schnabel Returns to the East Village
In the years before the mid-1980s art market boom, Schnabel forged a pictorial language that embraced unconventional methods and materials with a visceral effect; he introduced to the American contemporary art scene a particularly European post-war sensibility through his admiration for such figures as Francis Picabia, Sigmar Polke and Blinky Palermo; and he broke with the prevailing conceptualism through figuration, personal narratives and references to history and mythology. His poetic use of found materials and his embrace of chance operations (whether dragging a canvas on the ground, allowing a drop cloth to absorb the environmental stains of the studio, or exposing the paintings to the forces of weather) has proven highly influential for a subsequent generation of artists, including Joe Bradley, Nate Lowman, Dan Colen, Wade Guyton, Urs Fischer and Lucien Smith among others. With the four paintings on view at Oko, visitors will enjoy an opportunity to connect the dots across decades and locate Schnabel's indelible mark on the evolution of art since the late 1970s.
Located in an East Village storefront, Oko (oko is the Russian word for 'eye') is an art exhibition space conceived by Alison Gingeras in collaboration with Luxembourg & Dayan gallery as a venue for curatorial experimentation. Deliberately modest in scale, this ground floor venue in a typical 19th century tenement building on East Tenth Street draws its inspiration from the iconoclastic spirit of the neighborhood and the district's history as an incubator for innumerable cultural breakthroughs. Oko's first project was organized in November 2012 with the artist Danny McDonald in the former vintage jewelry store Magic Fingers that previously occupied the storefront.
Oko is open to the public Thursday through Saturday, 12-6 and by appointment.