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David Zwirner to present works by American artist Dan Flavin at FIAC 2011 in Paris
Dan Flavin, untitled (to the citizens of the Republic of France on the 200th anniversary of their revolution) 2, 1989. Blue, cool white, and red fluorescent light, 4 ft. (122 cm) wide, 2 ft. (61 cm) deep, height variable. © 2011 Stephen Flavin/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; courtesy of David Zwirner, New York.
PARIS.- David Zwirner announces the gallery’s participation in this year’s FIAC, held at the Grand Palais in Paris from October 20 to 23, 2011. For this year’s fair, the gallery (Stand B30) will present a significant installation of three related works by Dan Flavin, the American artist recognized for his pioneering installations of light and color made from commercially available fluorescent lights.

The works at FIAC are from 1989 – untitled (to the citizens of the Republic of France on the 200th anniversary of their revolution) 1, 2, and 3 – and have been exhibited only once previously, in Flavin’s 1989 solo exhibition at Leo Castelli Gallery in New York, which commemorated the 200th anniversary of the French Revolution.

Brought together for the first time since their initial presentation, these works follow a systematic progression when exhibited together. The notion of seriality and repetition was a consistent theme in Flavin’s work, and this group of works is a prime example of this practice. Seen as a group or individually, these works relate to each other in that the configuration of one accounts for that of another. Viewed together, each expands upon the experience of the others, offering a more complex understanding of each individual work.

Comprised of horizontal 2-foot fluorescent fixtures aligned from floor to ceiling in three bands of color, the composition of each of these works recalls the French flag. In untitled (to the citizens of the Republic of France on the 200th anniversary of their revolution) 1, the blue, white, and red bands of color are placed side by side along a wall; in untitled (to the citizens of the Republic of France on the 200th anniversary of their revolution) 2, the red lamps project out from the wall and face right; and in untitled (to the citizens of the Republic of France on the 200th anniversary of their revolution) 3, both the blue and the red lamps project from the wall and face to the left and right, respectively.

The Estate of Dan Flavin has been represented exclusively by David Zwirner since 2009, and in the same year the gallery presented Dan Flavin: Series and Progressions. On the occasion of the exhibition, David Zwirner published an extensive monograph devoted to the artist’s work in collaboration with Steidl, Göttingen. The publication contains installation photographs from the exhibition, along with rare archival documentation and new scholarship on the artist by contributors that include Tiffany Bell, Dan Graham, Anne Rorimer, Richard Shiff, and Alexandra Whitney. In 2008, Zwirner & Wirth (a gallery on New York’s Upper East Side run by David Zwirner and Iwan Wirth from 2000 to 2009) presented Dan Flavin: The Green Gallery Exhibition, which re-staged the seminal exhibition that took place in 1964 at Richard Bellamy’s influential (though short-lived) Green Gallery on West 57th Street, New York (dan flavin: fluorescent light, November 18 - December 12, 1964).

Dan Flavin
Dan Flavin’s (1933-1996) first solo exhibitions were held at the Judson Gallery in 1961 and the Green Gallery in 1964, both in New York. His first European exhibition was in 1966 at Galerie Rudolf Zwirner in Cologne, Germany; and in 1969, the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, organized his first major museum retrospective. His work was included in a number of key early exhibitions of Minimal art in the 1960s, among them Black, White, and Gray (Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, Connecticut, 1964); Primary Structures (The Jewish Museum, New York, 1966); and Minimal Art (Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, 1968). Flavin’s work would continue to be presented internationally over the course of the pursuant decades, at such venues as the Saint Louis Art Museum, St. Louis, Missouri (1973); Kunsthalle Basel, Basel; Museum Boymans Van Beuningen, Rotterdam (both 1975); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (1986); and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (1992), among others.

A major museum retrospective devoted to Flavin’s work was recently organized, in cooperation with the Estate of Dan Flavin, by the Dia Art Foundation in association with the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., where it was first on view in 2004. The exhibition traveled from 2005 to 2007 to the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Fort Worth; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; Hayward Gallery, London; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris; Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich; and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles. This first comprehensive, posthumous retrospective of the artist’s work was the culmination of a research effort that included the publication of the catalogue raisonné of Flavin’s work authored by Tiffany Bell.

Flavin’s work is included in major museum collections, and was most recently on view at the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts in St. Louis, Missouri, in the 2008 solo exhibition, Dan Flavin: Constructed Light.

A major permanent installation of the artist’s work can be found in Marfa, Texas. This large-scale work in colored fluorescent light is installed in six buildings at the Chinati Foundation. Initiated in the early 1980s, the final plans were not completed until 1996, and the work was inaugurated in October 2000. Another long-term installation can be seen in Bridgehampton, New York, where in 1983 Flavin began renovating a former firehouse and church to permanently house several of his works and to serve as an exhibition space and printmaking facility for local artists. The building was named the Dan Flavin Art Institute, and is maintained by the Dia Art Foundation. Currently on view until January 2012 at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. is Flavin’s major “barrier” work untitled (to Helga and Carlo, with respect and affection), 1974.

Grand Palais | David Zwirner | Dan Flavin |


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