The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Monday, March 30, 2015

Exhibition of early work by New York painter Jonathan Lasker on view at Cheim & Read
Jonathan Lasker, PRE-FAB VIEW, 1981. Oil on canvas, 30 x 40 inches.
NEW YORK, NY.- Cheim & Read present an exhibition of early work by New York painter Jonathan Lasker. The show groups together twenty seminal paintings, dating from 1977–1985, which attest to the origins of Lasker’s methodology, and ideas about abstraction, figuration and language. His consistent, critical questioning of the painting medium, which began with this early work, continues to influence his artistic practice today. The current exhibition will be accompanied by a full-color catalogue with an essay by Robert Hobbs.

Lasker was born in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1948. After attending Queens College and the School of Visual Arts in New York, he enrolled in CalArts, in Valencia, California, in the late 1970s. His time at CalArts, which coincided with the school’s heyday of Conceptualism, became an important determining factor on his work. Committed to painting and its history, Lasker defended his chosen medium against a critical audience of teachers and fellow students, most of whom dismissed painting as “dead” in a post-modern era. CalArt’s Conceptualism challenged Lasker to rethink painting’s significance and “progression,” thus strengthening his arguments. He adhered to the rigorous critical discourse of his peers but re-positioned it for a different end, ultimately exposing the unique dialectic inherent to painting: its objecthood versus that which it represents. Both physical and illusionist, literal and figurative, dimensional and flat, painting’s contradictory elements have provided Lasker with continually rich territory.

Rejecting affiliation with modernism, Lasker intentionally moved away from the self-referential, autonomous work of art and toward the realm of the populist, where high and low intertwine, decoration and pattern invade, and figuration mingles with abstraction. Hierarchies are reduced: foregrounds and backgrounds (and positive/negative forms) compete for spatial resonance, while at the same time each is understood as its own “visual language.” Most distinctive in Lasker’s work are ambiguous but evocative abstracted motifs, sometimes repeated in several compositions, with which he creates a vocabulary of “clues.” Lasker avoids reference to narratives or recognizable forms; he associates the motifs with “jigsaw puzzle” pieces or “image kits” from which the viewer must draw his own conclusions. As Hobbs points out in his essay, this echoes CalArts Conceptualist John Baldessari, whose Blasted Allegories (1978) shifted responsibility for the image’s meaning to the viewer, thus separating art and artist. Lasker’s early work exposes the viewer’s innate search for self-referential meaning, even with limited information, and further reveals the artifice of painting. As he tells Hobbs: “The problem concerns how much of the picture a viewer can receive and still be aware of the painting as a literal object.”

Lasker’s positioning of contradictory elements (thick/thin, brushed/troweled, gestural/flat, unconscious/conscious) through his use of three elementary essentials—figure, ground and line—challenge more traditional readings of non-representational painting. The early paintings presented in this exhibition reveal the formation of Lasker’s artistic approach, especially in regards to the ways in which paintings are constructed and perceived. He has said (quoted in Hobbs’s essay): “In my mind I’m still making the painting from 1977-80.” Recognizing the context in which these works were made—when attitudes towards painting were less than enthusiastic—makes them that much more notable for their incisiveness and originality. It also confirms Lasker’s influence on subsequent painters, and the true commitment he has to the medium.

Today's News

February 24, 2012

Exhibition of works by Russian Realist artists opens at the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz

Major exhibition of new work by Urs Fischer opens at Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills

Robert Adams, Robert Bechtle, and Ewan Gibbs exhibit at Timothy Taylor Gallery

Exhibition of early work by New York painter Jonathan Lasker on view at Cheim & Read

Man's childhood comic collection fetches $3.5 million at Heritage Auctions in New York

Giant child on a rocking horse by artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset unveiled in Trafalgar Square today

National Museum of Women in Arts celebrates 25th anniversary with new exhibition

"Oz" ruby slippers find their way home; major acquisition for Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

Recent work by David Rodríguez Caballero on view at Marlborough Chelsea

American war reporter Marie Colvin and French photographer Remi Ochlik killed in Syria

The personal Collection of Van Cliburn to be offered at Christie's New York on May 17

Art auction at Hamburger Bahnhof in Aid of Christoph Schlingensief's Operndorf Afrika

Paintings & livres d'artiste; and 19th and 20th century prints & drawings at auction at Swann Galleries

The Prince Gong Jade Mountain: Chinese Imperial jade gift surfaces at Bonhams

Chinese furniture and jades top Bonhams March Asian Decorative Arts Auction

One of Russia's finest emerging artists exhibits at Erarta Galleries in London

Roger McGough to open art installation at Museum of Liverpool

High Museum of Art names artist Rashid Johnson as 2012 recipient of the David C. Driskell Prize

Greek museums to increase security after thefts

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Alan Bean's Apollo 12 space memorabilia for auction at Bonhams' annual Space History sale

2.- Former electrician who hid 271 Picasso works found guilty of possessing stolen goods

3.- Museo del Prado brings together for the first time four masterpieces by Van der Weyden

4.- Study by Mexican anthropologist says elites' clash led to Teotihuacan collapse

5.- Classical realist painter Jenness Cortez re-imagines Leonardo's 'Mona Lisa'

6.- National Gallery of Art reunites Rubens' Three Magi for the first time in a century

7.- Adolf Hitler 1912 watercolor still life painting to be auctioned by Nate D. Sanders Auctions

8.- Curator at Croatia's Natural History Museum finds Neanderthals were world's first jewellers

9.- 17 tourists killed and 42 wounded as gunmen attack Tunisia's National Bardo Museum

10.- Anish Kapoor presents a series of giant and wildly expressive resin and silicon works

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site