Nicole Klagsbrun is pleased to present Billy Sullivan’s fifth solo exhibition with the gallery. With his signature directness and clarity, Sullivan continues to paint portraits of close friends and acquaintances. Together with these portraits, a new series of still life paintings will be exhibited, as well as a foray into wallpaper featuring the Yorkshire terrier, Missy, as the central motif.
Seldom seen without his camera, Sullivan has built up an archive of subject matter ranging from Manhattan’s downtown club scene of the 1970s, to close friends, to chronicling the fashion world, to intimate scenes on Long Island beaches. He can return to this archive for new subjects, or pose new and old friends in his studio. The still lifes he has recently created are lively and luminous in their execution and reflect the impact on Sullivan’s paintings of Long Island’s East End’s clear, ocean- washed light, and the occasional influence of Fairfield Porter and Jane Freilicher, just as scenes of Manhattan’s occasionally crowded interiors take Warhol into account.
Sullivan continues to alternately work in his Long Island and Lower Manhattan Bowery studios. Over the years his work has been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the U.S. and abroad, including the 2006 Whitney Biennial, Day for Night, and the more recent group show curated by Carroll Dunham for the Addison Gallery of American Art at Phillips Academy in Andover, MA, Open Windows: Keltie Ferris, Jackie Saccoccio, Billy Sullivan, and Alexi Worth. Sullivan’s work can be seen in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, both in New York City, as well as in The Parrish Art Museum in Southampton, New York, the Detroit Institute of Arts, New Orleans Museum of Art, and the Ellipse Foundation of Contemporary Art Collection, Lisbon, Portugal, among others.