DEE SHAPIRO In The Beginning… Selections From 1974 through 1981

David Richard Gallery

Mar. 31, 2024 - Apr. 23, 2021

211 East 121st Street
New York, 10035
PHONE 212 882-1705

This presentation focuses on an interesting and important time in Shapiro’s career, the mid-to-late 1970s through 1981. During this period, she leveraged the organizational grids and mark making (like connecting loops of yarn in knitting or hooking and knotting a rug) with her love of lines (think of a grid, the warp and weft in weaving) and passion for color to aesthetically merge paint and textiles. Acrylic paint was not brushed or pulled with a palette knife on her canvases, instead, she extruded it directly from tubes though a small tip, painstakingly and drop-by-drop (a derivation of pointillism with a brief drag connecting to the next “point”), transforming the fluid medium into individual “knots” of pigment. The resulting surfaces were rich and lush, full of densely pixilated pigment, casing shadows and providing depth on the surface like a woven textile. The complex patterns were the product of her use of mathematical algorithms, like the Fibonacci Sequence. The paintings include: chevron patterns zig-zagging across the canvas; dizzying spirals; and elaborate short horizontal lines of the same length that also create vertical columns providing an overlay of another pattern of angled lines spanning from edge to edge diagonally across the canvases.

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