By PAUL LASTER, July 2021
It’s summer in New York, which means that if you want to keep up with what’s happening on the art scene you have to also take a trip to the Hamptons, where the other half of the local art world is nestled.
Jumping off the Jitney in Water Mill, independent curator Renee Riccardo and I made our way to the Parrish Art Museum for two stimulating shows organized by the Chief Curator Alicia Longwell. Everything That Wasn’t White: Lonnie Holley at the Elaine de Kooning House features 35 new paintings, works on paper, and sculpture created by the self-taught artist and musician during his 2020 artist-in-residency at the Elaine de Kooning House in East Hampton, while Affinities for Abstraction: Women Artists on Eastern Long Island, 1950-2020 is a colorful overview focused primarily on paintings by 42 artists who have called the Hamptons home for a week, a season or a lifetime.
Catching a ride to Sag Harbor with Susan Galardi, Director of Communications at The Parrish, we stopped to check out The Church, a dynamically designed contemporary art space founded by the artists Eric Fischl and April Gornik in a former church. As I was trying to get Director and Chief Curator Sara Cochran’s attention through a window, Renee spotted Fischl on the grounds and they gave us a walk through the space and current group exhibition, Road Rage, which features 24 artists exploring car culture in a variety of means and media.
From Sag Harbor, we hopped on the public bus, which is as fast as an Uber in the heavy Hamptons’ traffic, and hit the galleries in East Hampton, starting at Jack Hanley’s pop-up space on Newtown Lane, where he was showing geometric abstractions based on graphic designs from advertising, logos and commercial signage by Belgian painter Alain Biltereyst. Working our way down the lane, we caught the engaging 36 Paintings exhibition at Harper’s East Hampton and then ran into Sara VanDerBeek, who was exhibiting manipulated imagery of Roman statuary displayed at the Louvre alongside found-object assemblages by Sari Dienes and Carolee Schneemann performance stills at Halsey McKay Gallery.
Further down Newtown Lane, Michael Werner Gallery was presenting an historical mix with figurative sculptures by German artist Wilhelm Lehmbruck alongside the abstract paintings and drawings of French artist Eugène Leroy; Sotheby's East Hampton and Van de Weghe had important resale pieces by Damien Hirst, Joyce Pensato and Andy Warhol on view; and Eric Firestone Gallery included rarely seen works by Dorothy Dehner in his Season Opener: 2021 show.
Heading over to Main Street, we ended the day with Rebecca Manson ceramic sculptures at Fairfax Dorn Project’s The Living Room; Laure Prouvost’s glass musical instruments, which looked more like sea creatures, at Lisson Gallery; a seascape dipped in tar by Minerva Cuevas and Dr. Lakra’s Sumi ink drawings depicting mysticism, sex, violence and survival at Kurimanzutto Out East; and compelling conceptual art photographs by Trevor Paglen at Pace Gallery. WM
Paul Laster is a writer, editor, curator, artist and lecturer. He’s a contributing editor at ArtAsiaPacific and Whitehot Magazine of Contemporary Art and writer for Time Out New York, Harper’s Bazaar Arabia, Galerie Magazine, Sculpture, Art & Object, Cultured, Architectural Digest, Garage, Surface, Ocula, Observer, ArtPulse, Conceptual Fine Arts and Glasstire. He was the founding editor of Artkrush, started The Daily Beast’s art section, and was art editor of Russell Simmons’ OneWorld Magazine, as well as a curator at P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, now MoMA PS1.
view all articles from this author