Awareness can feel like a bright island in an ocean of namelessness. The unthought and the unseen wash the shores, leaching into the ground of the mind under sagging frames of reference. There is endless erosion of the coastline, a subversive give-and-take. Objects are soaked with feelings and their identities compromised. Abstractions are contaminated. “Land” in Land, ed. Carroll Dunham (New York: Nolan/Eckman Gallery, 1989). Reprinted in Into Words: The Selected Writings of Carroll Dunham
Carroll Dunham, an important New York–based artist working in painting, drawing, and printmaking, discusses his practice, from coming into his own in the late 1970s to his current contributions as a maker and a writer within the continuum of art. Known for a conceptual approach, which includes aspects of abstraction and representation, Dunham is admired, especially by fellow artists, for his authentic and unyielding pursuit of consequential artworks. The artist Paul Chan confirms this admiration in his Publisher’s Foreword for the recently released book Into Words: The Selected Writings of Carroll Dunham: “I have admired Carroll Dunham’s work for many years. I still remember vividly his painting in America Is Hard to See, the inaugural exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art’s new building in 2015. When I entered the room where it hung, I gasped. The painting was at once exuberant, provocative, and entrancing. It literally took my breath.”
This Tuesday Evenings presentation is a special opportunity to hear from one of contemporary art’s most imperative voices and gain insights into a career that developed through a sensitivity to the past, an astute awareness of the present, and a personal insistence on making what needs to be made.
Café Modern serves cocktails and appetizers on Tuesday nights during the lecture series.
Image credit: Carroll Dunham, Horse and Rider (My X), 2013–15. Mixed media on linen. 115 ¾ x 80 inches. Collection of the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Museum purchase, The Friends of Art Endowment Fund