Press Release

Paul Kasmin Gallery is pleased to announce a solo presentation of James Nares’s Runway Paintings and films at Frieze New York 2017, May 5 – 7. The gallery’s booth (C17) will feature a selection of new paintings made from aircraft aluminum and thermoplastic paint and related drawings. A section of the booth will be devoted to two of the artist’s films: Ramp, 1976 and a new video, The Daily Torture, 2017.

Fascinated by movement, gesture and surface, Nares creates visual expressions of kinetic energy that suspend motion in place and captures its transience. In the Runway Paintings, Nares paints with the same industrial grade materials and machinery used in aviation to guide flight paths during takeoff and landing. Instead of using conventional art making tools, Nares drives a road marking machine over 84-inch square black panels of aircraft aluminum covering its surface with strips of white thermoplastic paint. Nares then intersperses “Premium High Index Beads - Airport Grade” by hand, giving the black & white paintings an ever-shifting, iridescent coating. This mechanized process yields works that are unexpectedly idiosyncratic and gestural, an extension of his earlier Brushstroke paintings through images of overlapping, textured and splattered lines. Each Runway painting takes its title from a code word in the NATO phonetic alphabet, encapsulating the rapid communication of information during flight.

The booth will also screen two films that reveal the artist’s lifelong exploration of light, movement and gravitational force. In Ramp, 1976, Nares chases after a rolling concrete ball around downtown New York, trying to affix his Super 8 camera on the object’s moving image and distorting the viewer’s sense of distance and speed in the process.  The Daily Torture, made 41 years after Ramp, is a new short video, capturing a continuous drip of water onto the front page of The New York Times or “just whatever it happens to be that day,” as Nares says.

James Nares was born in London in 1953 and currently lives and works in New York. His film, STREET, is currently the subject of the exhibition, James Nares: In the City at the Milwaukee Art Museum, WI. STREET was also previously exhibited at The National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. (2014) and Metropolitan Museum of Art (2013). In 2008, Anthology Film Archives hosted a complete retrospective of his films and videos. His work is included in a number of public and private collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Wadsworth Atheneum, the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of Art, and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. In 2014, Rizzoli published the first monograph dedicated to James Nares’ work in all media over the last four decades.