David Zwirner is pleased to present an exhibition of paintings from the 1940s to the 1960s by the celebrated Italian artist Giorgio Morandi (1890- 1964) on view at our 537 West 20th Street location in New York. The first major exhibition of Morandi's later work in America since the acclaimed 2008 retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the show will focus primarily on the period during which he developed and refined his investigations of serial, reductive, and permutational forms and compositions–aspects that had a profound influence on twentieth-century and contemporary art and painting. The exhibition will include important loans from institutions such as the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., as well as from numerous significant private collections.
Over the course of his five-decade career, Morandi was most prolific during the postwar years from 1948 until his death in 1964, when he executed more than half of his entire output of paintings. Throughout these intensely creative years, Morandi worked almost exclusively in series. Remaining dedicated to the repertoire of subjects that had occupied him since the early 1910s, including tabletop still lifes of bottles, boxes, vases, and flowers, as well as occasional landscapes, his variations on a given compositional motif became more persistent, nuanced, and abstract in the later part of his life. Through subtle shifts in color, tone, scale, composition, and mark-making, Morandi was able to convey the ever-changing perceptual understanding and memory of the objects and spaces one encounters.
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One of the most beloved painters of the twentieth century, Giorgio Morandi created works that continue to exert their mysterious power on viewers worldwide.
This publication focuses on the period from 1948 to 1964, during which Morandi developed and refined his investigations of serial, reductive, and permutational forms and compositions, a body of work that has had a profound influence on twentieth-century art and painting. Included here are five of the ten iconic “yellow cloth” paintings from 1952, a series featured prominently in the historic 1998 exhibition at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, and numerous late paintings by the Italian master. Lavishly reproduced, these immersive plates draw attention to the idiosyncratic perspectival and color-driven decisions that give the work its abstract power. The catalogue is published on the occasion of the 2015 exhibition of Morandi’s paintings from this period at David Zwirner, New York—which, according to The New York Times, represent “lucid perfection, at once cerebral and impassioned.” It marked the first major presentation of the artist’s late work in America since the acclaimed 2008 retrospective at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.