(Thursday) 17 February - (Saturday) 19 March 2011
Reception for the artist : Thursday, 17 February, six to eight p.m.
Howard Scott Gallery is pleased to announce the opening – on Thursday, February 17 – of an exhibition of recently completed paintings by Donald McLaughlin. The forthcoming exhibition will be the artist's eighth one-person show with the gallery.
McLaughlin's new paintings are perhaps best described as a fever dream of early Modernism – equal parts homage, critique, parody, nostalgia, and impersonation. As is often the case, this particular body of McLaughlin works began with the dovetailing of the personal and the scholarly. When illness forced a prolonged convalescence on the artist, keeping him away from the studio, he began reading artists' biographies and monographs. He was particularly taken with Sonia Delaunay's scroll-like illustration for Blaise Cendrars' 1913 prose poem "La Prose du Transsibérien et de la Petite Jehanne de France." That, in turn, inspired a series of gouache drawings, leading to this current group of paintings, but other influences (Bram Van Velde, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, The Bloomsbury Group) also fed McLaughlin's re-configured neo-Modernism.
The show is entitled Excerpt, a reference to the several distinct series which compose the exhibition. The largest group, a synthesis of Cubism and Expressionism called the "Berlin Paintings," employs a loose handling, high key colors, and a jagged compositional immediacy. The smaller, easel-size paintings are like distress flags from non-existent countries. Interesting to note, a certain sense of unease and wariness permeated everything McLaughlin painted in the last year.
Donald McLaughlin began exhibiting publicly in his native Wilmington, Delaware in 1978. His work was included in thematic exhibitions in many U.S. museums and university galleries during the 1980's and 90's and is included in a number of important private and corporate collections in this country.