January 15, 2009 — February 21, 2009




Press Release



Paul Kasmin Gallery is pleased to announce an upcoming exhibition of James Nares' new paintings and a video installation, Element Number One. This will be the first time the artist's paintings and video will be on view together. The exhibition follows his acclaimed thirty-four-film retrospective, Motion Pictures at Anthology Film Archives in May of 2008.

Known in the 1970s for his music, films and performances, and affiliation with the No Wave movement, Nares is now recognized primarily for his paintings, but has continued to work in multifarious mediums. His paintings are most frequently made in a single brush stroke and record a single movement. The works are made in a circular process by which the artist repeatedly creates and erases strokes until the desired result is achieved: a record in paint of a moment in motion. The artist keeps a vast collection of handmade brushes at the ready, which he makes himself from fibers fabricated in Asia. This exhibition marks a departure for the artist. Rather than using the solid cadmium, ultramarine, and magenta pigments frequenting his work of the recent past, Nares' most recent paintings incorporate iridescent pigments. Reminiscent of butterfly wings on dark backgrounds, these pigments, colorless in the can, create a multi-tonal effect by means of light refraction rather than actual pigmentation.

One of the artist's newest videos, Element Number One, best exemplifies the interconnectivity between the paintings and films within Nares' oeuvre. By using a high-speed camera, the artist extends a brief moment in time, to reveal a world usually invisible to the naked eye. In a characteristic act of ingenuity, Nares created a aesthetic experience with tools designed for a scientific application – a repurposed surveillance camera normally used to troubleshoot automated assembly line efficiency. We witness a viscous, ethereal fluid form as it goes through stages of germination, growth and death within minutes. The video demonstrates a keen interest in organic motion, which imbues Nares's photographs, sculptures and paintings alike, thereby interlocking the mediums within his oeuvre. Amy Taubin remarked (May 2008, Artforum), "What Nares has done for more than thirty years is repeatedly run a few potent, related ideas—about movement and stillness, ritual and improvisation, interior and exterior—through multiple media to define the particularities of each."

Garnering much attention from the art critical community and the mainstream public, Nares exhibits internationally and has recently been the subject of solo exhibitions in Cologne and Dublin. His work is included in a number of public and private collections including the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of Art, and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery.

For additional information and/or images please contact Mark Markin, [email protected]




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