11.03.2010

Seeing the Light

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I’ve been lukewarm about Dan Flavin all these years. That’s odd, really, because as someone who works reductively and with luminous color in my own painting, I should have embraced Flavin’s oeuvre. Better later than never. I’ve seen the light. Then again, this is the first time I've ever seen this particular piece.
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I walked into the Paula Cooper Galler to find a long rectangular structure dwarfed by the cavernous space. My first look was to the right, where I saw a yellow green glow pouring out of the structure and bathing the wall opposite. I followed it. What you see below is what I saw, in the way I saw it.
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From inside, the stucture creates a luminous hallway that you can enter. Beyond the wall of light is a black void tinged pink around the edges.

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Walking around the back of the dark gallery, you see both ends of the structure. The color above is pretty accurate (a challenge for a small point-and-shoot trying to understand fluorescent.)
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Approaching the opposite entrance . . .

. . .  and entering. I love this view



This work is Untitled (to Barry, Mike, Chuck and Leonard), 1972-1975; 8’ x 8’ x (no length given). Edition of three, with one fabricated. The show was up through October 30. You can see more images of additional work on the gallery website.

5 comments:

annell said...

I watched the returns with interest and dismay last night....it is good to see the light this morning. And I will trust it isn't over, maybe just begun.....

Wendy Wolfe Rodrigue said...

I had a similar epiphany regarding Flavin at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston last year.

Your pictures are wonderful. Thank you for sharing-

Richard Bottwin said...

YUM! Thanks for this posting. It's really a treat.

Mery Lynn said...

I prefer Flavin when his work looks more like James Turrell - creating an atmosphere rather than a specific neon sculpture.

Joanne Mattera said...

Mery Lynn,
Now that you put it into words, I'm sure that's why I responded to this work--the atmosphereic quality of the light, rather than the light itself. Thanks.