SECTION FOURTEEN
THE ART PAGE

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COLUMN SEVENTY, APRIL 1, 2002
(Copyright 2002 Al Aronowitz)


JOHN ZURIER Oblaka 14, 2000 Oil on linen; 36" x 24"

JOHN ZURIER, ROBERT RYMAN, JOSEPH MARIONI: PAINTING  through 13 April, 2002

LARRY BECKER CONTEMPORARY ART, 43 North Second Street, Philadelphia is presenting new work in varying scale by three up-and-coming artists of the contemporary avant-garde---all respected for a distinctive focus on painting itself: John Zurier, Robert Ryman and Joseph Marioni.

Each works within his own characteristic range of palette and color study in relation to scale, structure, and 'hand' or approach to the medium.  Transparency, viscosity or the light-emitting properties of earth pigments are some elements that figure into the delineated but illuminating explorations of Marioni, Ryman, and Zurier respectively.  But while the work of each is very different, we find the differences of great interest, Also, all three credit their mutual support and their materials as an important and integral part of the work.

Outstanding public and private collections, including major museums here and abroad, have acknowledged all three men proportionate to the lengths of their careers.  The rigorous attitude taken by each of these artists to his work has become noticeably noteworthy, but more importantly, the work is balanced and rewards itself with the resonance and complex visual richness of the paintings for which they are known.

The exhibition began February 15 and was to continue through mid-April, but the overwhelming response already has prompted the gallery to extend the showing to April 20. The exhibition, featuring works from each of the artists, including a painting executed on site especially for this exhibition by Robert Ryman: Philadelphia Prototype, 2002.  It is comprised of ten elements, each about 26" square, within an integral wall area thirty-seven feet wide (ten feet to a corner plus twenty-seven feet).  Luminous titanium white prevails upon and past the edges of buff-colored flat vinyl panels.

The gallery also presents for the first time Joseph Marioni's deeply-hued Blue Paint, 2002 and John Zurier's light-receptive 012laka 61, 2002.  All of the paintings from Zurier and Marioni are recent, ranging in dates from 2000 to 2002.

Scale and relation to space are elements acknowledged in the concept for this exhibition.  Marioni works with scale/size/format parameters in relation to color as an integral part of each painting. This selection covers three variations.

One of John Zurier's largest recent paintings, MAZ 3, 2000 (93" x 126"), balances the proportion of surface markings to the size of the canvas as in other much smaller works here.  Ryman's painting is in the space.

Although the artists themselves are acquainted, this is the first gathering together of the work of all three.  Their simultaneous presence allows a mutual illumination.

This exhibition happens to overlap two other important exhibitions in the Philadelphia area, the 2002 Biennial Exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York (in which, it turns out, John Zurier is included for the first time;  Robert Ryman and Joseph Marioni have both been included at the Whitney show in previous years) In whaat is perhaps a planned coincidence, Barnett Newman will be featured at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Regular hours for Larry Becker Contemporary Art on Fridays and Saturdays begin at 11 AM and end at 5 PM. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, appointments are advised.  In addition, Photographs are available upon request. Also, see http://www.artnet.com/lbecker.html.

215/925 5389 Contact: Heidi Nivling or Larry Becker  ##

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