Garth Greenan Gallery is pleased to announce Al Loving, an exhibition of mixed media constructions at 529 West 20th Street. Opening on May 21, 2015, the exhibition is Loving's second with Garth Greenan Gallery. Seven of the artist's torn paper “collage-paintings” will be on view, including Barbara in Spiral Heaven (1989), one of Loving's largest and most ambitious works.
The exhibition provides an in-depth look at the artist's work from 1978 to 1989—hulking masses of richly colored cut and torn paper mounted directly to the wall. Works in the exhibition such as Humbird (1989) illustrate the vibrance and sheer dynamism of Loving's work from this period. As in his famed “torn canvases” of the early 1970s, the artist dispensed with notions of centralized composition, figure/ground separation, and pictorial frame. In works like Humbird, he combined hundreds of pieces of cut and torn paper into an abundance of overlapping patterns and shapes. Their rich and intuitive array of colors stretch irregularly, spiraling outward, surrounding the space, and engulfing the viewer.
Born in Detroit in 1935, Al Loving studied painting at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. In 1968, Loving relocated to New York, where he found himself among a milieu that included artists Robert Duran, Alan Shields, Howardena Pindell, Richard Van Buren, and the dancer and choreographer Batya Zamir. A year later, in 1969, Loving famously became the first African-American to have a one-person show at the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Throughout his career, Loving had solo exhibitions at many well-known institutions, including: Gertrude Kasle Gallery (1969, 1970, Detroit), William Zierler, Inc. (1971, 1972, 1973, New York), Fischbach Gallery (1974, 1976, New York), The Studio Museum in Harlem (1977, 1986, New York), Diane Brewer Gallery (1980, 1983, New York), June Kelly Gallery (1988, 1990, 1992, New York), the Neuberger Museum of Art (1998, Purchase, New York), and Kenkeleba House (2005, New York). His work was also featured in many important group exhibitions, such as L'art vivant aux États-Unis (1970, Fondation Maeght, Saint-Paul, France), Contemporary Black Artists in America (1971, Whitney Museum of American Art), Lamp Black: Afro-American Artists, New York and Boston (1973, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), Another Generation (1979, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York), Afro-American Abstraction (1981, P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center, Queens), and The Appropriate Object (1989, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo), among others. Most recently, Loving's work appeared in High Times, Hard Times: New York Painting, 1967-1975 (2006, Weatherspoon Art Museum, University of North Carolina, Greensboro), Target Practice: Painting Under Attack, 1949-1978 (2009, Seattle Art Museum), and America is Hard to See (2015, Whitney Museum of American Art).
Loving's work is featured in the collections of major museums around the country, including: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas; the Detroit Institute of Arts; the Metropolitan Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Museum of Modern Art; the National Gallery of Art; the Pérez Art Museum Miami; the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; the Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University; and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Garth Greenan Gallery is pleased to represent the Estate of Al Loving.
Al Loving will be on view at Garth Greenan Gallery, 529 West 20th Street (between Tenth and Eleventh Avenues), through Saturday, June 27, 2015. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. For more information, please contact Garth Greenan at (212) 929-1351, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.