March 15 – April 11, 2015 | Opening reception and brunch: 12 – 4 pm, Sunday, March 15
55 Alewive Brook Road | East Hampton, NY | 11937
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Halsey McKay is pleased to present a very special offsite exhibition with artist Chris Duncan at the Elaine de Kooning house and studio in East Hampton.
On January 17th, 2014 Chris Duncan flew from Oakland to New York to install a series of black cotton fabrics in the solarium and studio windows of Elaine de Kooning’s former home in East Hampton. It was planned that over the course of 4 months, the sun would expose the image of the windows into the fabric, continuing the artist’s ongoing body of work that maps out places through sun bleaching.
Upon landing at JFK airport, Duncan was notified that his aunt, Robin Biglin, a motherly figure in his life, had unexpectedly passed away while he was in flight.
Four months later, there were complications with the fabric fully exposing over the time alloted access to the house. In turn, architectural replicas of the two large scale windows were fabricated. One structure was built and placed on a roof in Brooklyn, and the other in Oakland. Removed from the house in East Hampton, the fabric was again placed and left to the elements in these new locales. Now, fully exposed, stretched over wooden supports, and placed back in the place of their origin, the finished works act as metaphors for resilience, complication, time passing and the residue of a cycle. For the artist, the installation represents the convergence of his personal history and art history, through the time and space of two strong women. Duncan sees their energy fused to these work and the exhibition as an exercise in ways to grieve, process and evolve.
About the House: In 1975, Elaine de Kooning reconciled with Willem and purchased the house at 55 Alewive Brook Road. She added the studio three years later and created her last important bodies of work — the Cave Walls and Cave Paintings (1985-88). She also painted the commissioned portrait of the Brazilian soccer player Pele and according to her assistant from that time, Barry Gordy’s portrait was completed in the studio as well as others. After her death, the sculptor John Chamberlain owned the house and studio, followed by the painter Richmond Burton. Since 2011, the artists Joe Bradley, Jonah Freeman and Justin Lowe, Kim Jones, Jose Lerma, Liz Markus, Scott Reeder, and Michael Williams have worked there. This past summer, Tyson Reeder, Sadie Laska, and Lizzi Bougatsos were in residence. The Chris Duncan Skylight exhibition will be the first solo exhibition presented in the house as part of this program.
About the Artist: Chris Duncan holds a BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts and his MFA from Stanford University. Duncan’s work has been included in recent exhibitions at The Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, CA; Museum Of Modern Art, NY, New York; De Rosa Preserve, Napa, CA; Cooper Cole Gallery, Toronto, Canada; Loyal Gallery, Stockholm, Sweden; among others. Duncan’s work is held in the collections of the Museum Of Modern Art, New York, NY; SFMoMA, San Francisco, CA; The Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis, MO; Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, CA and the Arsenal, Montreal, Canada. Outside of his studio practice he organizes events and runs a small artist book press and record label called LAND AND SEA with his wife. Duncan currently lives and works in Oakland, California and is represented by Halsey McKay Gallery.