Contemporary Lyrical Abstraction

June 2 - June 28, 2015

Contemporary Lyrical Abstraction_Seager Gray Gallery

The term “lyrical abstraction” has been used to describe two separate post-war modernist art periods. One was related to Abstract Expressionism and occurred primarily in France after 1945. Artists such as Jules Olitski, Joan Mitchell and Sam Francis expressed themselves in the language of abstraction, but in a less gutteral, more descriptive form, using movement of brushstroke and generous applications of paint to create paintings of uncommon complexity and beauty. Later, in the 60’s the term “American lyrical abstraction” emerged referring to artists such as Helen Frankenthaler and Robert Natkin who were moving away from geometric, hard-edge, and minimal styles, toward more sensuous, fluid abstractions worked in a loose gestural style. It is with a nod to those moments in history that we present Contemporary Lyrical Abstraction featuring painters Leslie Allen, Tim Craighead, Frances McCormack, Claudia Marseille and Christine Hayman. In planning the exhibition, we became interested in how some shapes and markings in paintings show up in three-dimensional sculpture. We decided to include the wire sculptures of Emily Payne and cardboard shapes of Ann Weber, creating an interesting dialog between the paintings and 3-dimensional forms.