Paul Kasmin Gallery is pleased to announce Morris Louis/Landon Metz on view at 297 Tenth Avenue from March 3 – April 9, 2016. The exhibition features Tzadik, 1958, a monumental work from the Veil series by iconic Color Field painter Morris Louis, alongside new works by contemporary artist Landon Metz. Deeply influenced by the Color Field movement, Metz is known for his elegant stained-canvas paintings in which he plays with varying formal elements, degrees of transparency and opacity, and compositional arrangements. The exhibition is organized in collaboration with Alex Bacon.
One of the founding members of the Washington Color School, Morris Louis’ innovations in staining unprimed canvas and integrating negative space into a composition have grown increasingly relevant to a current faction of young painters. In a piece about Louis’ process for Art International in 1960, Clement Greenberg asserted that “the suppression of the difference between painted and unpainted surfaces causes pictorial space to leak through – or rather, to seem about to leak through – the framing edges of the picture into the space beyond them. ”
This statement is especially applicable to the paintings of Landon Metz, whose spare vocabulary of biomorphic forms spread across the picture plane – often on the outer margins of a raw canvas – exhibits a direct relationship with Louis. In recent years, works by the 30-year old artist have evolved from traditional rectilinear formats, to shaped canvases and now three-dimensional paintings that border on the sculptural. Presenting a series of paintings and his most substantial sculpture to date, all conceived of and installed in response to the architecture of the gallery, the exhibition illustrates the continued evolution of a movement that was deprived of further innovations by the untimely death of one of its central practitioners.
First championed by Greenberg in 1953 and later by Lawrence Rubin and Andre Emmerich in the late 1950s, Morris Louis (1912 – 1962) unexpectedly died of lung cancer at the height of his career. Following his death at age 49, major posthumous exhibitions and retrospectives have been held at the Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York (1962); the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (1967); the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC (1976); and the Museum of Modern Art, New York (1986).
Landon Metz (b. 1985) has had recent solo exhibitions at Galleria Massimo Minini, Brescia, Italy; Galleria Francesca Minini, Milan, Italy; Retrospective Gallery, Hudson, NY; ADN Collection, Bolzano, Italy; James Fuentes Gallery, New York, NY; and Andersen’s, Copenhagen, Denmark. He is represented by James Fuentes Gallery in New York and Galleria Massimo Minini in Italy. Metz lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.