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Matthew Marks exhibits fourteen works on paper and two sculptures by Anne Truitt
Anne Truitt, Sound Ten, 2003. Acrylic on paper, 19 1/2 x 19 1/2 inches, 50 x 50 cm.

NEW YORK, NY.- Matthew Marks is presenting Anne Truitt: Sound, the new exhibition in his gallery at 523 West 24th Street. The exhibition includes fourteen works on paper and two sculptures. All the works come from the artist’s estate and are being shown for the first time.

Anne Truitt completed the fourteen paintings on paper that comprise the Sound series in 2003, a year before her death at age eighty-two. For each work, she took a sheet of paper approximately twenty inches square and covered it edge to edge with paint. The color is calibrated for maximum “force,” as she put it, while her brushstrokes assert a newfound energy. While making this series, Truitt described waking one morning with the impression that her sense of shape, structure, and proportion had departed her. “What is left is ‘sound,’ some kind of energy without name,” she wrote. “It occurred to me that the ‘name’ of the things I am making out of the beautiful delicate strong paper is SOUND.”

Accompanying the Sound series are two sculptures, Hover and Pond Sound (both 1999). “In Hover I have finally made a sculpture the size of a dog,” she said. “I have always wanted to do it, since the early 1960s.” Hover is an eighteen-inch wood column smoothly finished with yellow paint, which the artist applied in numerous layers, sanding them carefully between coats to achieve the desired intensity of color. The work’s diminutive height, unusual for Truitt, allowed her to draw the viewer’s focus to the top of the sculpture, which is painted a pale lavender. By extending this color a fraction of an inch down each side of the work, she has created the sensation of a flat plane floating free from the yellow column. The deep green Pond Sound , on the other hand, includes a dark strip around its bottom edge, a bass note that grounds this perfect cube. “It's got a wonderful resonance,” Truitt said.

Anne Truitt (1921–2004) lived and worked in Washington, DC, for most of her life, as well as three years in Japan between 1964 and 1967. Walter Hopps organized the first retrospective of her work at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1973, and in 2009 the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington organized the first comprehensive posthumous survey of her sculpture and drawings. In 2013 the three volumes of her acclaimed journals, Daybook (1982), Turn (1986), and Prospect (1996), were republished in e-book and audiobook formats, alongside a new print edition of Daybook . In 2017 an installation of Truitt’s paintings and sculptures opened at Dia Beacon, where it remains on long-term view. The Museo Reina Sofía in Madrid is organizing a survey exhibition of Truitt’s work for 2022, her first at a European museum.

Anne Truitt: Sound is on view by appointment only at 523 West 24th Street from November 12 to December 19, 2020.

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