"Geoffrey Holder: Pleasures of the Flesh" opens at James Fuentes Gallery

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"Geoffrey Holder: Pleasures of the Flesh" opens at James Fuentes Gallery
Geoffrey Holder, New York Beauty, 1992.

NEW YORK, NY.- On November 2nd James Fuentes began the exhibition "Geoffrey Holder: Pleasures of the Flesh", curated by Hilton Als, which will continue through December 3rd, 2022. A true polymath, Holder was a painter, photographer, choreographer, director, costume designer, dancer, actor, and composer born in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. In 1953, during his early twenties, Holder relocated to New York City, a move financed by the sale of his paintings and by 1957 he would receive a Guggenheim fellowship in painting. Focusing on Holder’s remarkable work as a painter, this exhibition spans the 1970s through the later part of his career.

As a visual artist, Holder’s works evidence a singular and recognizable spirit of combined calm, elegance, and life force. He brought a controlled intensity to the way he portrayed his subjects; often visually isolated in the frame yet possessing a presence that filled the image. Holder was also a photographer, as represented in his volume, Adam, published in 1986 by Viking Press. While painting remains the lesser recognized of the disciplines that he is celebrated for, it was the medium most constant and central to him throughout his life, offering rich ground for experimentations in imagery, style, and representation.

In collaboration with the Holder family, Pleasures of the Flesh marks the gallery’s first exhibition of Geoffrey Holder’s work in representation of the artist’s estate. A two-part project, Pleasures of the Flesh coincides with Holder’s art fair debut at The ADAA Art Show, New York, November 2-6, 2022.

Hilton Als is associate professor of writing at Columbia University and former staff writer and theater critic for The New Yorker. He has taught at Smith College, Wesleyan University, and Yale University. Prior to the New Yorker, Als was a staff writer for the Village Voice and an editor-at-large at Vibe. He has received numerous awards for his work, including the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism (2017), Yale’s Windham-Campbell Literature Prize (2016), the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism (2002-03), and a Guggenheim Fellowship (2000). His first book, The Women, was published in 1996. His most recent book, White Girls, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and the winner of the Lambda Literary Award in 2014.

Als edited the exhibition catalogue for Black Male: Representations of Masculinity in Contemporary American Art, on view at the Whitney Museum of American Art (1994–95). His forthcoming book, My Pinup, a meditation on love and of loss, of Prince and of desire, published on November 1, 2022.

Since 2007, James Fuentes has championed a gallery program that is led first by exceptional contemporary artists who are atypical from the conventions of their field. The gallery has become known for its focus on humanity, history, and society with a non-exclusionary approach, positioning itself as a leader in the field as our contemporary institutions seek to do the same.

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