Stanley Whitney has been exploring the formal possibilities of colour within ever-shifting grids of multi-hued blocks and all-over fields of gestural marks and passages, since the mid-1970s. His current motif, honed over many years, is the stacked composition of numerous saturated colour fields, delineated by between three to five horizontal bands running the length of a square-formatted canvas. The cumulative effect of Whitney’s multi-coloured palette is not only one of masterly pictorial balance and a sense of continuum with other works in this ongoing series, but also that of fizzing, formal sensations caused by internal conflicts and resolutions within each painting. Taking his cues from early Minimalism, Colour Field painters, jazz music and his favourite historical artists – Titian, Velazquez and Cézanne among them – Whitney is as much an exponent of the process-based, spatially-gridded square in art as Josef Albers, Sol LeWitt, Agnes Martin and Carl Andre.
Please click here to download Stanley Whitney’s dossier.
Stanley Whitney was born in Philadelphia in 1946 and lives and works in New York City and Parma, Italy. He holds a BFA from Kansas City Art Institute as well as an MFA from Yale University and is currently Professor emeritus of painting and drawing at Tyler School of Art, Temple University. Selected solo exhibitions include ‘Focus – Stanley Whitney’ at the Modern Art Museum, Fort Worth, TX, USA (2017) and ‘Dance the Orange’ at the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY, USA (2015). Whitney has been included in group exhibitions at, among others, documenta 14, Kassel/Athens (2017); the American Academy of Arts and LeGers, New York (2017); Camden Arts Centre, London (2016); Logan Center for the Arts, Chicago, and Contemporary Art Museum Houston (both 2014); Belvedere, Vienna (2012); The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City (2008); Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach (2007); Art in General, New York (1998); Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania (1991); The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York (1981); and Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield (1976). He is the recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship (1996) and Pollock-Krasner Fellowship (2002) and won the first Robert De Niro, Sr. Prize in Painting (2011) and the American Academy of Arts and LeGers Art Award (2010).