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Vija Celmins

Vija Celmins

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Essay by Vija Celmins

This volume catalogs Vija Celmins’ (born 1938) first new body of work since 2010, featuring paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures.

The Latvian-born, New York–based artist has been rendering nature imagery from black-and-white photographic sources since the 1960s, exploring the same subjects repeatedly in paintings, drawings and prints. Here, she focuses on two motifs she has employed for several decades: the ocean’s surface and the night sky. The imagery, however, is not her foremost concern: “The recognizable image is just one element to consider. The paintings seem more a record of my grappling with how to transform that image into a painting and make it alive.” This process can be seen in A Painting in Six Parts (1986–87/2012–16), a group of six oil paintings based on a photograph she took 50 years ago from a pier in Venice, California.

Published by Matthew Marks Gallery, 2018
Hardcover,  138 pages, fully illustrated
Dimensions: 10 1/2 x 9 1/4 inches (26.67 x 23.49 cm)

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