First monograph dedicated to the American artist, this catalogue offers an in-depth investigation of his work. It assembles more than 65 artworks and three essays, by Kenneth Goldsmith, Jo Melvin and Balthazar Lovay, as well as an interview with Gene Beery by Gregor Quack.
For more than 60 years, Gene Beery (b. 1937) has interrogated the moment of aesthetic experience with humor and irony. What are the stakes of an encounter between a viewer and an artwork? What does the surface of the canvas promise to whoever looks at it? Beery positions himself with pictures to be read, whose phrases announce the arrival, the impossibility or the absurdity of such an experience. Behind the apparent nonchalance and sarcastic distance of his practice emerges a profound reflection on the existence of art and the role of the artist.
In 1960 the artist made his first text paintings, unclassifiable works at the intersection of Fluxus, Minimalism, neo-Dada and assemblage. If his first paintings took a true anti-painting stance, the artist extended the field of his practice, beginning in 1965, to a figuration relieved of any ideological position. He thus anticipated painting’s many revivals in the decades that followed. His unique approach resonates with the avant-garde movements—poetic and artistic—of the 1950s–1960s, and with the most current artistic practices.
Gene Beery, 4 May–30 June 2019