NEW CANAAN, CONN.- Heather Gaudio Fine Art
announces an exhibition of works by Esteban Vicente (1903 2001), one of the leading abstract expressionist painters and a founding member of the New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture. The show is presented in collaboration with The Harriet and Esteban Vicente Foundation courtesy of Ameringer | McEnery | Yohe, New York, NY and features Vicentes ethereal Garden Paintings whose subject matter was inspired by the carefully cultivated garden at his Bridgehampton, Long Island home. Roberta Smith writes of Vicentes work - His talent lay in his ability to borrow liberally and synthesize confidently, with elegant color combinations, bold scale and, in particular, an unerring sense of abstract composition that reflected his late-blooming grasp of Cubist structure. These colorful abstractions will be paired with the striking sculpture of artist Paul Bloch. Vicente + Bloch opened on Thursday, March 27 and will be on view through May 31.
Since he began painting in his home province of Segovia, Spain, Esteban Vicente almost always used color as a way of capturing the quintessence of the place in which he lived and worked. But it was not until moving to America in 1936 that he gradually shifted away from the dark tones often associated with Spain and Spanish painting to a brighter, more vibrant palette. The Garden Paintings, a collection of abstract works from the 90s, is a testimonial to his late painting and the chemistry of color that was its hallmark. As Vicente entered the final years of his long and accomplished life, he drew inspiration from the ambrosial hues of his garden in Bridgehampton, close at hand and not more than a few steps from his studio door.
Barbara Toll writes This is not Giverny, but it is every bit as much a labor of love. Vicentes garden did not include exotic plants, waterways and bridges. He used cottage-garden flowers available in every local plant shop. But he used them with abandon and to great effect. Esteban Vicente created a garden with the colors he wanted to paint. And with the garden as inspiration, he used those colors to paint ethereal canvases.
Vicentes work may be found in numerous museum collections including the Museum of Modern Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. In Spain, his work is included in the Institut Valencià DArt Modern (IVAM), Valencià; the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid; and the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo Esteban Vicente, Segovia, a museum established by the Spanish Government in Vicentes honor in 1998.
To me painting has to be done with your mind as clear as possible. It is necessary to put away any aspects of violence, or action; on the contrary, to be in control all the time until you lose your sense of consciousness. Esteban Vicente
Paul Bloch has been carving sculptures in marble and limestone, as well as bronze, for over thirty years. He works directly (without a model) utilizing the volume of the material and maximizing the limits of the stone. Bloch's sculpture is improvisational; his first inspiration was jazz. Twelve years of Bloch's career were spent in Carrara, Italy, which honed his skills and clarified his vision.
Paul Bloch was born in New York and studied anthropology, music and sculpture in Cleveland, OH. He moved to California in the early 1970's and began to seriously pursue a career as a sculptor. For three years he assisted the West Coast sculptor, James Pristine. In l994 Bloch received an Athena Foundation Grant to sculpt at the Mark di Suvero Studio in New York City. Bloch has exhibited in California, New York and Santa Fe, NM, as well as Italy and Switzerland.
In my early years in Berkeley, where so many of my colleagues were doing additive sculpture in metal or ceramics, I learned to treat the stone like a piece of chewing gum which I could pull, push and bend in any direction
The balance and tension between negative and positive space and the infinite with the finite were -- and still are -- my sculptural concerns
Stone is a fundamental material. As a man and artist, it is my goal to transform that substance into beauty and give something back to the cosmos. Paul Bloch