PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Dallas December 2021

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 43 of 99

Christopher Hubbard A ny artist, collector, or curator familiar with late 20th-century painting has brushed up against the formidable talent of Peter Halley. A thought leader, one- time publisher of Index magazine, and former director of graduate studies in painting at Yale, he is also a pioneer in creating conceptually rigorous canvases that explore the confluence of social space in the digital era. Halley's now- on-view exhibition at the Dallas Contemporary is a must-see for fans of both the '80s and today. It proves that this master of the Neo-Geo movement remains relevant to the language of contemporary painting. More than three decades after he first captivated the art world with a breakthrough show at Sonnabend Gallery, NYC, in 1986 — now considered one of the exhibitions of that decade — Halley has forged a fresh path that pushes abstraction forward. As a painter, Halley is also one hell of a colorist, one-upping Matisse in a palette of neons that could rival any bold hue currently on the runway. Then there's the composition of his paintings: abstract yet conjuring dystopian prisons and cells, oddly connected via conduits, evoking a disquieting sense of tomorrow that's equal parts isolation and a tuned-in/switched-on 24/7 universe of sound bytes, Above: Peter Halley's SAW II, 2016, at the Dallas Contemporary. Right: The artist. GEOMETRY LESSON PETER HALLEY'S SYNCOPATED "CELL GRIDS" AT THE DALLAS CONTEMPORARY By Catherine D. Anspon. Portrait Nicholas Calcott. memes, and TikTok streams. The opportunity to view a cadre of Halley's recent canvases, shown together for the first time, is huge. The 18 large-scale paintings are executed in his signature fluorescent acrylic and Roll-a-Tex technique that imparts texture to the surface. But what's new is that single canvases, isolated into cells, are assembled by the artist into grid forms that are then bolted together to create a fresh work seamlessly composed of the individual painting parts. We're reminded of monochromes and Mondrian, as well as Post-Modernist constructs of art-making. Peter Halley: Cell Grids," through February 13, 2022, at the Dallas Contemporary; To get to the heart of this new work, PaperCity commissioned Yale MFA grad/University of Texas assistant art professor Beverly Acha to interview Halley, who headed the department during her time at Yale. Read the full conversation at © PETER HALLEY 42

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of PaperCity Magazine - PaperCity Dallas December 2021