Artissima 2016, installation view, galerie frank elbaz Photo: Renato Ghiazza
galerie frank elbaz is pleased to present a Jay DeFeo monographic booth for the Artissima 2016 edition. Although Jay DeFeo is primarily associated with a community of artists in the San Francisco Bay Area, she spent a seminal six months working in Florence while on a post-graduate fellowship. This presentation by galerie frank elbaz is the first significant exhibition of DeFeo works in Italy since she was in residence in 1952.
Jay DeFeo (Born in 1929 in Hanover, New Hampshire, USA. Died in 1989 in Oakland, CA, USA) grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. She studied art at the University of California, Berkeley, receiving her master of fine arts degree in 1951. Upon graduation, the university awarded her a fellowship, which she used to travel through Europe and North Africa in 1951 and 1952, lingering in Paris and Florence to create her first body of mature works. After returning to the Bay Area in 1953, the art she began making incorporated the dualities of representation and abstraction, organic rhythms and geometric form, refinement and expressionism.
DeFeo worked with unorthodox materials to explore the broadest definitions of sculpture, drawing, collage and painting. In 1958, DeFeo began to work on “an idea that had a center to it” and almost eight years later, in 1966, completed The Rose, a monumental work created with so much oil paint that she called it “a marriage between painting and sculpture.” Although best known for her monumental painting The Rose (1958–66, Collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art), DeFeo created an astoundingly diverse range of works in painting, collage, works on paper, sculpture, photography and even jewelry in her four decades of making art.
The selection of works for Back to the Future focuses on Jay DeFeo’s last two decades of making art. In the 1970s, DeFeo entered one of the most creative periods of her life, completing a large corpus in a breath of diverse media. She continued her productive and extensive experimental attitude to materials through the 1980s until the year of her death at age 60 in 1989. Excellent examples of the diversity of her approach are found in the Tripod series, which she began in 1975 and worked on intensively for several years. galerie frank elbaz is proud to present several iconic works from this revelatory group, including some that were exhibited in Jay DeFeo: A Retrospective, the celebrated 2013 exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.