Artifex Press

Artifex Press Artifex Press is a publisher of digital catalogues raisonnés. Our catalogues are available through subscription. Our catalogues raisonnés include those for Chuck Close, Jim Dine, Tim Hawkinson, Sol LeWitt, Agnes Martin, Lucas Samaras, and James Siena.

Operating as usual

04/12/2021

Congratulations to #JamesSiena on receiving the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship in Fine Arts.

Working across a diverse range of media, including lithography, etching, woodcut, engraving, drawing, and painting, Siena creates works that are driven by self-imposed predetermined sets of rules, or “visual algorithms,” which find their end-result in intensely concentrated, vibrantly-colored, freehand geometric patterns.

To learn more about the award, visit the Foundation's website.

https://www.gf.org/announcement-2021/-

03/29/2021

This Thursday, April 1, at 3 PM PDT, join the Santa Barbara Museum of Art for "The Art of Agnes Martin: Between the Lines of the Catalogue Raisonné," an online conversation with scholar Tiffany Bell.⁠

Presented on Zoom, the talk will delve into the research for the catalogue raisonné on Martin's work, shedding light on recent observations that have influenced a new understanding of Agnes Martin's art.⁠

Martin's work will be the subject of a solo exhibition at our New York gallery from May 7 – June 26, 2021. To register for the talk, visit SBMA's website.

https://tickets.sbma.net/event-detail/art-matters-2021-04-01/

Artifex Press is pleased to announce that it will be offering free access to the Jim Dine Catalogue Raisonné, edited by ...
03/01/2021

Artifex Press is pleased to announce that it will be offering free access to the Jim Dine Catalogue Raisonné, edited by Sara K. Davidson, beginning today, March 1, and running through the end of April. ⁠

"Jim Dine: Sculpture, 1983-present" is the definitive publication of three-dimensional works created by the artist since 1983, the period during which he has worked extensively with Walla Walla Foundry in Washington. The catalogue raisonné details the artist’s complete output of freestanding sculpture from these years—more than 300 original works. It lists comprehensive information for individual casts within editions, of which there are approximately 900 in total, and it has been regularly updated with information about new works since its initial publication in 2013. The catalogue also includes nearly three dozen exclusive videos of the artist in conversation with Editor Sara K. Davidson, discussing his body of work. ⁠

If you have already registered for free access to our site, your account will automatically grant you access to this publication. If you have not yet registered, you may do so by clicking the red "Register Free" button on our homepage at www.artifexpress.com.

The Jim Dine Catalogue Raisonné will be available for free through the end of April 2021, as part of Artifex Press’s ongoing effort to provide access to its catalogues at a time when many libraries and institutions are closed to the public to combat the spread of COVID-19. ⁠

Image: The artist with "Harvest," 1984, before it was painted. ⁠
© 2021 Jim Dine/Artist Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo courtesy the artist

Artifex Press is pleased to announce that it will be offering free access to the Jim Dine Catalogue Raisonné, edited by Sara K. Davidson, beginning today, March 1, and running through the end of April. ⁠

"Jim Dine: Sculpture, 1983-present" is the definitive publication of three-dimensional works created by the artist since 1983, the period during which he has worked extensively with Walla Walla Foundry in Washington. The catalogue raisonné details the artist’s complete output of freestanding sculpture from these years—more than 300 original works. It lists comprehensive information for individual casts within editions, of which there are approximately 900 in total, and it has been regularly updated with information about new works since its initial publication in 2013. The catalogue also includes nearly three dozen exclusive videos of the artist in conversation with Editor Sara K. Davidson, discussing his body of work. ⁠

If you have already registered for free access to our site, your account will automatically grant you access to this publication. If you have not yet registered, you may do so by clicking the red "Register Free" button on our homepage at www.artifexpress.com.

The Jim Dine Catalogue Raisonné will be available for free through the end of April 2021, as part of Artifex Press’s ongoing effort to provide access to its catalogues at a time when many libraries and institutions are closed to the public to combat the spread of COVID-19. ⁠

Image: The artist with "Harvest," 1984, before it was painted. ⁠
© 2021 Jim Dine/Artist Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo courtesy the artist

"I found as I got into the Agnes Martin project that my original understanding of her work and her life was uninformed. ...
02/24/2021

"I found as I got into the Agnes Martin project that my original understanding of her work and her life was uninformed. I knew her as a mystic who had retreated from the world and I was mostly familiar with her work from the 1970s and up. I really had little knowledge of her biography and I thought of her art in relation to minimalism I guess. I hadn’t seen much of her work from the 1950s or 1960s. That work was a revelation and it provides the context for what she did later. I love all Martin’s art but I was, and am still, blown away by the ambition and beauty of those paintings from 1963-1967. And her life story is inspirational—that she was born on the remote prairies of western Canada and became one of the great American painters of the 20th century—as a woman."

Read Artifex Press President David Grosz's interview with Tiffany Bell, Editor of the Agnes Martin Catalogue Raisonné, up now on the Artifex Press blog. Read the full interview at https://www.artifexpress.com/posts/finding-inspiration-from-agnes-martin-an-interview-with-tiffany-bell

Image 1: "Friendship," 1963. Incised gold leaf and gesso on canvas. 75 x 75 inches.
Digital image, The Museum of Modern Art, New York/Scala, Florence

Image 2: "Flower in the Wind," 1963. Oil on canvas. 75 x 75 inches. Photo courtesy Pace Gallery

Image 3: "Night Sea," 1963. Oil, crayon, and gold leaf on canvas. 72 x 72 inches.
Photo by Katherine Du Tiel, courtesy San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

“ANZAÏ might have wanted simply to describe the [Mono-ha] movement by depicting its protagonists, but it is his (and his...
02/17/2021

“ANZAÏ might have wanted simply to describe the [Mono-ha] movement by depicting its protagonists, but it is his (and his contemporaries’) relentless gaze toward these artists that might actually have allowed for such discursive categories as Mono-ha and Post-Mono-ha to emerge in the first place. The performative symbiosis of the (temporary) sculptural work and the photographic work is such that they continuously valorize each other. From the vantage point of today, the ANZAÏ photographs reanimate the sculptures' significance—the very existence of a photographic record both describes and produces meaning (perhaps a spirit of the avant-garde). Just as the photograph relies on the existence of the sculpture, the sculpture relies on the photograph for proof of its sometime existence. Like Lee’s work, ANZAÏ's work is not entirely conclusive, containing multitudes and contradictions at its core. Looking at these images today, it makes me think that this archive of the past is somehow still alive, still speaking and still acting, much more than mere document.”

Read “Artist by Artist: ANZAÏ and Lee Ufan,” by Research Associate Taro Masushio, up now on the Artifex Press blog, at https://www.artifexpress.com/posts/artist-by-artist-anzai-and-lee-ufan

Image: August 1970, “Aspects of New Japanese Art,” National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo. Artwork (c) Lee Ufan/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo (c) Estate of Shigeo Anzaï, courtesy of Zeit-Foto

“ANZAÏ might have wanted simply to describe the [Mono-ha] movement by depicting its protagonists, but it is his (and his contemporaries’) relentless gaze toward these artists that might actually have allowed for such discursive categories as Mono-ha and Post-Mono-ha to emerge in the first place. The performative symbiosis of the (temporary) sculptural work and the photographic work is such that they continuously valorize each other. From the vantage point of today, the ANZAÏ photographs reanimate the sculptures' significance—the very existence of a photographic record both describes and produces meaning (perhaps a spirit of the avant-garde). Just as the photograph relies on the existence of the sculpture, the sculpture relies on the photograph for proof of its sometime existence. Like Lee’s work, ANZAÏ's work is not entirely conclusive, containing multitudes and contradictions at its core. Looking at these images today, it makes me think that this archive of the past is somehow still alive, still speaking and still acting, much more than mere document.”

Read “Artist by Artist: ANZAÏ and Lee Ufan,” by Research Associate Taro Masushio, up now on the Artifex Press blog, at https://www.artifexpress.com/posts/artist-by-artist-anzai-and-lee-ufan

Image: August 1970, “Aspects of New Japanese Art,” National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo. Artwork (c) Lee Ufan/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo (c) Estate of Shigeo Anzaï, courtesy of Zeit-Foto

"For Irwin, the symposium marked a turning point in his work, because it highlighted how an individual aesthetic experie...
02/03/2021

"For Irwin, the symposium marked a turning point in his work, because it highlighted how an individual aesthetic experience was not just an art question but also an environmental and social concern. Irwin carried such concerns with him as he turned away from a studio-based practice and embraced new ways to activate the aesthetic potential of the built environment. With his first consignment from the Museum of Modern Art later that year, he shifted such environmental investigations from the interior spaces of his studio to that of galleries and museums, and in this way the next major phase of his career was born."

Read "Toward a New Direction: Robert Irwin and the First National Symposium on Habitability," by Marianne Stockebrand, Editor of the Robert Irwin Catalogue Raisonné, up now on the Artifex Press blog. Read the full post at:
https://www.artifexpress.com/posts/toward-a-new-direction-robert-irwin-and-the-first-national-symposium-on-habitability

Image 1: Working on the skylight, Robert Irwin second from left
Image 2: Irwin cleaning glass panels color-coated by Larry Bell to be inserted under the skylights
Image 3: Irwin and unidentified person inside the studio set up for the symposium with sonotubes covering storefront window
Image 4: Participants during the first day with color-coated skylights as only light source

All artwork (c) Robert Irwin, photos by Larry Bell

In @artforum in 2011, Annie Ochmanek wrote of this rare figurative work by James Siena: ⁠⠀"The representational quality ...
01/27/2021

In @artforum in 2011, Annie Ochmanek wrote of this rare figurative work by James Siena: ⁠⠀
"The representational quality latent in Siena's abstractions was actualized in a selection of somewhat grotesque figurations... "Screaming Old Man," 2008-11, which was hung in the midst of these deformities, portrays a face midscream, as if at the peak of a kind of Ayahuascan hallucination of apocalyptic interconnectedness—a nauseating revelation perhaps fitting considering the installation of works surrounding it. The Old Man reminds us, too, of the ritualistic or cultish element to Siena's patterns; the micro-cosmic structure of his designs invokes an ethnographically wide range of imagery denoting belief systems and meditative models."⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Learn more about Siena's work in the James Siena Catalogue Raisonné, available free to registered users through the end of February. Sign up for free access at www.artifexpress.com ⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Image: "Screaming Old Man," 2008-2011⁠⠀
Enamel on aluminum⁠⠀
Photo by Kerry Ryan McFate, courtesy Pace Gallery

In @artforum in 2011, Annie Ochmanek wrote of this rare figurative work by James Siena: ⁠⠀
"The representational quality latent in Siena's abstractions was actualized in a selection of somewhat grotesque figurations... "Screaming Old Man," 2008-11, which was hung in the midst of these deformities, portrays a face midscream, as if at the peak of a kind of Ayahuascan hallucination of apocalyptic interconnectedness—a nauseating revelation perhaps fitting considering the installation of works surrounding it. The Old Man reminds us, too, of the ritualistic or cultish element to Siena's patterns; the micro-cosmic structure of his designs invokes an ethnographically wide range of imagery denoting belief systems and meditative models."⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Learn more about Siena's work in the James Siena Catalogue Raisonné, available free to registered users through the end of February. Sign up for free access at www.artifexpress.com ⁠⠀
⁠⠀
Image: "Screaming Old Man," 2008-2011⁠⠀
Enamel on aluminum⁠⠀
Photo by Kerry Ryan McFate, courtesy Pace Gallery

"I've made enough of [my paintings] to know how they will read from a distance. I don't have to back up and look at them...
01/20/2021

"I've made enough of [my paintings] to know how they will read from a distance. I don't have to back up and look at them. The analogy might be to a composer scoring a composition for a number of musical instruments. He knows what the bassoon, the oboe, or whatever will sound like when they are played together... I guess what I'm making are color chords of a kind. I assign qualities to certain marks by giving them colors. When they're played together—or seen together—the color chord melts in the mind (as they used to say about 'acid'). They come together to make some kind of color world."

Read Associate Editor Christine Lee's post on Chuck Close's portraits of musicians, and the long friendships and inspirations that resulted, at https://www.artifexpress.com/blog

"I've made enough of [my paintings] to know how they will read from a distance. I don't have to back up and look at them. The analogy might be to a composer scoring a composition for a number of musical instruments. He knows what the bassoon, the oboe, or whatever will sound like when they are played together... I guess what I'm making are color chords of a kind. I assign qualities to certain marks by giving them colors. When they're played together—or seen together—the color chord melts in the mind (as they used to say about 'acid'). They come together to make some kind of color world."

Read Associate Editor Christine Lee's post on Chuck Close's portraits of musicians, and the long friendships and inspirations that resulted, at https://www.artifexpress.com/blog

This is the latest in a series of blog posts in which Artifex Press staff members delve deeper into the artworks they ar...
01/13/2021

This is the latest in a series of blog posts in which Artifex Press staff members delve deeper into the artworks they are researching, sharing insights and discoveries gleaned during the intensive process of assembling a catalogue raisonné. This post is by Christopher Vacchio, Director of Research, Sol LeWitt Wall Drawings Catalogue Raisonné. Read the full series of posts at www.artifexpress.com/blog.

-

When Sol LeWitt created his first wall drawing at Paula Cooper Gallery in 1968 for the Benefit For The Student Mobilization Committee To End The War in Vietnam (which was also the gallery’s first exhibition), his work was the only one not to carry a specific price—the price list noted the work was sold “by hour,” meaning it would be based on the cost of LeWitt installing the work on the buyer’s wall. Although the work didn’t sell during the exhibition, it was the beginning of LeWitt’s long history of highlighting the physical and financial cost of labor in his artworks, a focus directly tied to the leftist politics of the Vietnam War era in which artists and others in the art world began to align themselves as "art workers" within a capitalist system.

Perhaps the best-known of these works is "Wall Drawing #48," first installed for the Museum of Modern Art’s landmark Information exhibition, curated by Kynaston McShine. The title of the work, doubling as its instructions, was “Within four adjacent squares, each 4’ x 4’, four draftsmen will be employed at $4.00/hour, for four hours a day and for four days to draw straight lines 4 inches long using four different colored pencils; 9H black, red, yellow and blue. Each draftsman will use the same color throughout the four day period, working on a different square each day.”

The federal minimum wage in June 1970 was $1.45 an hour (equivalent to approximately $10 today), while the New York State minimum wage was about to be raised from $1.60 to $1.85 an hour (nearly $13 today). The disparity between the pay LeWitt afforded his drafters and the minimum wage is a reflection of the value LeWitt placed on his drafters and their work. As he became increasingly successful and the pace of his exhibiting quickened, he depended more and more on drafters to install wall drawings and considered their work integral to the realization of his vision. (LeWitt has been the subject of more than 700 solo exhibitions since the 1960s.)

In "Wall Drawing #43," first installed in April 1970, LeWitt made the tension between employee and employer intrinsic to the work. The instructions for the work as installed at Protetch-Rivkin Gallery, Washington, D.C., were “On the wall measuring 136" x 95" in the gallery, four draftsmen, each using a different color pencil (9H Black, Red, Yellow and Blue) will draw lines for as long as the gallery owners will pay them, but for a minimum of eight hours each. The placement of the lines will remain at the discretion of the draftsmen.” By setting a minimum time for the drafters to work, LeWitt ensured a level of visual completion to the work, as well as a minimum windfall for the drafters. But by leaving the amount of time beyond that up to the gallery owners, LeWitt created a tension between their desire to have a “finished” work to sell and their desire to minimize production costs.

In "Wall Drawing #25," first installed in 1969, the labor of the drafters is explicitly the subject of the work, because it can only be viewed while the drafters are at work, as their final act is to destroy it. The title of the work is “Four drafters each superimpose a band of parallel lines 36 inches (90 cm) wide in a different direction on a different wall on each of four days. On the fifth day they paint out the drawing.” LeWitt did not view the installation of his wall drawings as a performance or theater, and so the fact that this work can be viewed only while being installed implies a desire to make visible the labor and the laborers who physically create his works. LeWitt later cemented this idea by creating a cataloguing system whereby the first drafters of each wall drawing were recorded in the work’s caption and wall label, and the drafters of each individual installation are also listed. By doing so, LeWitt asserted that crediting the drafters by name was as integral to the work as other cataloguing details like title, medium, and date.

LeWitt entrusted many decisions in the execution of his work to the drafters. While the artist always took complete authorship of his works, in a meaningful number of cases he delegated significant decision-making responsibility to the drafter. The most significant examples are a subset of LeWitt’s location drawings, in which the language of the instructions defines the precise locations of points, lines, and geometric figures on the wall. For these works, rather than indicating the exact locations of the figures, LeWitt's instructions say, “The specific locations are determined by the drafter.” Thus, every installation of these works is completely different, the visual result of decisions by the drafter, as anticipated by LeWitt. Although LeWitt once commented, “what the work of art looks like isn’t too important,” it takes a great deal of trust to allow someone else to make such important decisions affecting the outcome of the work.

For decades now, the LeWitt Studio, which comprises his drafters and the several chief assistants who oversee them, has functioned as a sort of mini jobs program for working artists. Working as a LeWitt drafter has allowed many younger artists to have flexible work and steady income, so that they could focus on their own studio practices fully at other times. (This is in contrast to LeWitt’s own experience—and that of several contemporaries such as Robert Mangold and Dan Flavin—working the night shift at the Museum of Modern Art so that he could dedicate himself to artmaking during the day.) A number of artists who would go on to widespread acclaim have worked on wall drawings, among them Glenn Lewis, Christian Marclay, Kazuko Miyamoto, Matt Mullican, Adrian Piper, Cindy Sherman, and James Welling. LeWitt was known to give works as gifts to thank the drafters of important exhibitions, to anonymously buy the work of artist friends he wanted to support, and to trade works with artists without regard for the relative financial value of the works. Many of these artists have long commented on LeWitt’s influence on their work. Perhaps more importantly, they have also spoken of his quiet mentorship and generosity in giving them the means to advance their own careers, and his support in helping them navigate the art world on their own terms.

Address

New York, NY

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Artifex Press posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The Business

Send a message to Artifex Press:

Videos

Category

Nearby media companies


Other Publishers in New York

Show All