Winkleman Gallery is very pleased to present Lanquidity, our first solo show of paintings by New York artist Jimbo Blachly. Known for his sculpture, installations, and his collaborations with Lytle Shaw as editors for the Chadwick Family (who will have another exhibition at Winkleman Gallery this spring), Blachly secretly took up painting again four years ago after a 30-year hiatus. While immediately recognizable as having Blachly’s sensibility, the landscapes and geometric abstractions he created, and only recently revealed to anyone, display a lifetime of closely examining what painting can be at both the micro and macro levels. This examination stems in part from Blachly’s day job in an art conservation studio, where his constant contact with major twentieth-century paintings involves interacting with them both as physical objects and as artworks.
Intimate, fragmentary, allusive, Blachly’s small canvases evoke at once romantic depictions of sublime experience (from earlier Europeans like Palmer and Turner to the later Americans like Blakelock and Ryder) and modernist abstraction a la Palermo or the late work of Picabia. And yet the relation between these references is strangely and perhaps surprisingly unified—since it is as if Blachly zooms in to the figurative, dramatic world of Romantic painting in order to reveal a domain of largely figureless abstraction, of down time within the world of the sublime. This excavation of quiet ambience from a world of keyed-up intensity runs throughout Blachly’s painting, which often explores installation logics by working in small constellations or configurations. Devastatingly gorgeous, Blachly’s canvases evoke the grainy surface next to the grand event.
The installation for Lanquidity, as with most of Blachly’s exhibitions, will be decidedly “site determined,” worked through intuitively, with the dual goals of presenting each painting as an individual work and highlighting rhythms and connections between works up until the final moments before he concludes the installation is complete. The exhibition also will feature several notesbooks and framed drawings.
Jimbo Blachly’s work has been exhibited widely including at the Sculpture Center, Long Island City, NY; Elizabeth Harris Gallery, New York, NY; Cirius Arts Center Cobh, Ireland; and Hunter College’s Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Art Gallery, New York, NY. He has received fellowships from the Farpath Fellowship, Dijon, France, and the Bellagio Fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation. He earned his BFA from The School of the Art Institute, Chicago, IL, and his MFA from University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI