David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of works by John McCracken at the gallery's 537 West 20th Street location in New York. Drawn primarily from the last decade of the artist's career, the works on view explore varying articulations of seriality within the artist's diverse oeuvre, and the way in which he engaged formal concerns, such as verticality, surface, and particularly color, as a means of composing simple, but deeply resonant sculptures and installations.
McCracken occupies a singular position within the recent history of American art, as his work melds the restrained formal qualities of Minimalist sculpture with a distinctly West Coast sensibility expressed through color, form, and finish. He developed his early sculptural work while studying painting at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland in the late 1950s and early 1960s. While experimenting with increasingly three-dimensional canvases, the artist began to produce objects made with industrial materials, including plywood, sprayed lacquer, and pigmented resin, creating the highly reflective, smooth surfaces that he was to become known for.
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"I think of color as being the structural material I use to build the forms I am interested in. The fact that in another sense I use plywood, fiberglass and lacquer as structural materials is of less importance. I have found that a certain combination of color inensity and transparency and surface finish provide me with the expressive means I way, at least for the present."