UPCOMING: Julian Schnabel: The Patch of Blue the Prisoner Calls the Sky

Pace Gallery
540 West 25th Street
New York, NY 10001

March 6 – April 18, 2020

Opening Reception: Thursday, March 5, 6–8 p.m.

Pace Gallery is pleased to present The Patch of Blue the Prisoner Calls the Sky, Julian Schnabel’s first solo exhibition at the gallery’s new Chelsea home. The exhibition features thirteen recent paintings by the artist.  The show will be on view at 540 West 25th Street from March 6 – April 18, 2020, with an opening reception on Thursday, March 5 from 6 – 8 PM.  An essay by James Nares, titled The Patch of Blue the Prisoner Calls the Sky, will accompany the exhibition.

These works catalogue the possibilities of how and what to paint, revealing a new way of looking at the world that blurs the line between representation and configuration. As Nares explains, “These paintings represent the evidence of their own autonomy. They are metaphoric in an open way, not to interpretation as image but as underlying principles and facets of nature.”

Weather-beaten fabrics provide a temporal point of departure.  “Julian is drawn to surfaces and objects that show their own history—scuffed-up cardboard, the discarded sails of sailing ships, Kabuki theater backdrops… he thinks of them as ‘opportunities’—calls them ‘veils of time.’”

Painted with marks Nares refers to as “a kind of mapping of the mind,” the works evoke volcanoes, rock formations, ocean waves, deserts, outer space, all rendered in emotive indigo blues, blood reds, pale pinks and olive greens – eternity. Once a utilitarian object, the fabric ground contains traces of its past life and the perfection of the coincidental, opening a window into both our world and one imagined in dense paint. “The paintings are full of dynamic surprises….Small fire, a prism, and a window-like opening in a place with no wall, blue sky beyond…”