Paula Cooper Gallery Presents: Dan Walsh

Visual Arts

An exhibition of new work by Dan Walsh will examine the artist’s ever-expanding vocabulary of material, form and scale. On view will be paintings, works on paper, a wood carving, and a sculpture, whose geometric patterns and programmatic compositions lead to a profusion of perceptual and psychic effects. Images and objects that at first appear fixed, come to disclose complex systems of experiment that lend to manifold historical allusions. The gallery’s forthcoming exhibition follows Walsh’s major yearlong career survey at the Bonnefantenmuseum in Maastricht, on view through January 5, 2020.

In ways both refined and economical, three large-scale paintings, titled Expo I, Expo II, and Expo III, prompt the experience of pure, unadulterated looking. Viewed in sequence, the elusive internal logic of each work becomes progressively more intricate—gridded shapes, chromatic gradations, and line weights vary from top to bottom, left to right, or bilaterally across the canvas. “Minimalism, with its grid- oriented and elemental base, has shown to be flexible,” Walsh states. “What was once a rigorous idea about reduction and essentialism is now just a starting point … The most important influence I take away from minimalism is the orientation of the viewer. I always try to emphasize the psychology that occupies the space between the minimalist object/painting and the viewer.”1

Composed of stacked modules, a new floor sculpture translates Walsh’s use of the grid as a generative matrix into three-dimensional space. Assembled from colored resin cubes, the work produces elaborate optical play in which clarity and opacity coexist. Engaging viewers on a more intimate scale are Walsh’s ink drawings. In these works, Walsh explores the cognitive convergence—or divergence—of semiosis and visual perception.

Born in Philadelphia, Walsh lives and works in New York. His work is included in public collections around the world, including the Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, Paris; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Art Institute of Chicago; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Walsh has been exhibited at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center in Long Island City; the New Museum in New York; the Centre National d’Art Contemporain in Nice; the Speerstra Foundation in Lausanne; the RISD Museum of Art in Providence; the Rønnebaeksholm, Naestved; the Villa du Parc, Annemasse; and the Kunstverein Medienturm, Graz. His prints and limited-edition books were the subject of a one-person exhibition at the Cabinet des Estampes in Geneva, Switzerland. Walsh was included in the Ljubljana Biennial, Slovenia, the Lyon Biennial of Contemporary Art, France (both 2003), and the Whitney Biennial in Spring 2014. In 2016 he collaborated with his sister, Lexa Walsh, for a two-person exhibition entitled “Both Sides Now” at the Williams College Museum of Art. In 2019 the artist was the subject of a yearlong one-person exhibition at the Bonnefantenmuseum, Maastricht (NL), co-organized by Jan van Eyck Academie, Maastricht.