THOMAS NOZKOWSKI: Touchstones
Directors Tour with Stuart Horodner
Friday, August 4, 6:30 - 7:30 pm
Thomas Nozkowski is known for his modestly scaled abstract paintings, featuring enigmatic shapes and richly textured surfaces. In contrast to many artists of his generation and successive ones, he works slowly in oil paint on prepared panels and paper, and the size of his work never extends beyond three feet in any direction.
Viewers are drawn into his intricately formed spaces, which are influenced by direct observation of the world around him and enhanced by his pictorial imagination. A hike in the area of the Hudson Valley where he lives, an arrangement of household objects, and numerous examples of art in European and American movements have all made their way into his paintings, but rarely can one identify a specific starting point. Instead, one recognizes a carefully orchestrated event, the result of procedures of making, changing, and remaking. His works possesses a startling freshness, despite the amount of time necessary to create them.
We easily could have chosen a variety of Nozkowski paintings and drawings and installed them in our galleries. Instead, we asked him to pair a selection with art from the Museum’s permanent collection. In this way, he could tease out aspects of inspiration and affinity, allowing viewers to make surprising connections. Works by Milton Avery, Stuart Davis, Paul Gauguin, Morris Graves, David Alfaro Siqueiros, among others, help us appreciate Nozkowski’s achievements as well as the Museum’s collection.
Thomas Nozkowski received his B.F.A. from The Cooper Union School of Art, New York, in 1967. His paintings have been featured in more than three hundred museum and gallery exhibitions worldwide, including more than seventy solo shows. His work is in the permanent collections of Brooklyn Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Morgan Library and Museum, and The Museum of Modern Art in New York; in The Phillips Collection, Hirschhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.; and many others.
Left: THOMAS NOZKOWSKI, Untitled (L-1), 2011, oil on paper. Courtesy of the artist and Pace Gallery, NY
Right: KARL SCHMIDT-ROTTLUFF, Afternoon Sun, 1959, watercolor on paper. Collection of the UK Art Museum. Bequest of George and Susan Proskauer
Left: THOMAS NOZKOWSKI, Untitled (7-47), 1994, oil on linen on panel.
Courtesy of the artist and Pace Gallery, NY
Right: MORRIS GRAVES, South American Brush Hen, Bronx Zoo, 1937, lithograph on paper.Collection of the UK Art Museum. Bequest of George and Susan Proskauer
Left: THOMAS NOZKOWSKI, Untitled (9-26) (The Katy Kill), 2012, oil on linen on panel. Courtesy of the artist and Pace Gallery, NY
Right: PAUL GAUGUIN, Mahana Atua (La Nourriture des Dieux or Feast of the Gods), 1894-95
(reprinted by Polo Gauguin in 1921), woodcut on paper, Collection of the UK Art Museum
Top: THOMAS NOZKOWSKI, (Untitled 9-18), 2011, oil on linen on panel. Courtesy of the artist and
Pace Gallery, NY
Bottom: STUART DAVIS, Barber Shop Chord, 1931, lithograph on paper. Collection of the UK Art Museum
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