Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art is pleased to announce the inclusion of three works by Isabel De Obaldía in “Sympathetic Magic,” a group show curated by Elisa Decker at Westbeth Gallery, located at 55 Bethune St. in New York City. The show will be on view March 29 – April 15.
Sympathetic Magic delves into the numinous and explores how different artists come to terms with the unseen through works that explore the bridge between the physical world and an invisible universe of memory and mystery. The exhibition is about magical presence, about how the otherworldly manifests itself in each artist’s process.
Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art will exhibit three original artist’s sketchbooks. Please visit us in booth A4 at the Park Avenue Armory, February 28 – March 4. The following sketchbooks will be on view.
Diego Rivera, The Italian Sketchbook, 1920-21
At the conclusion of the Mexican Revolution in 1920, José Vasconcelos, the new Secretary of Public Education, devised a plan to promote the ideals of the revolutionary government through an ambitious program of mural painting. Diego Rivera was asked to head the movement, and accepted on the condition that that he could first tour Italy in order to study first hand the fresco paintings of the Renaissance. Traveling in Italy, Rivera sketched as he viewed the frescoes and paintings of artists such as Giotto, Uccello, Mantegna, and Tintoretto, making handwritten notes in several languages directly on his drawings. He was keenly interested in the relationship between painting and architecture, later putting his observations to brilliant use in the murals that he painted. In translating the formal ideas and techniques of the Renaissance painters to his mural projects in Mexico and the United States, Rivera provided the historical link between the Italian Renaissance and Twentieth Century Muralism in the Americas.
Gunther Gerzso, The Surrealist Sketchbook, 1943-46
This sketchbookwas created in 1943-46 when the young artist was strongly influenced by the circle of Benjamin Péret, a small group of European artists exiled in Mexico during the 1940s. The book presents a striking record of Gerzso’s close ties to Leonora Carrington, Wolfgang Paalen, André Breton, Remedios Varo, César Moro and Alice Rahon. Many of the drawings in the sketchbook were made through the carbon paper transfer method, which the Surrealists used to stimulate automatic drawing and “subconscious” creativity. Another group of drawings was inspired by the discovery of the Pre-Columbian village of Tlatilco. Pre-Columbian art and archeological sites had a profound impact on Gerzso’s own artistic output, as it helped him move away from European ideals to create his own artistic style deeply rooted in the landscape, culture, and history of Mexico.
Leonora Carrington, Sketches from “Down Below,” October 1940
This rare original sketchbook was drawn in October 1940 while the 23 year old artist was involuntarily committed to the Sanatario Morales, a psychiatric institution in Santander, Spain. Following the forced separation from her lover Max Ernst and the onset of World War II, Carrington suffered a nervous breakdown and was institutionalized by her British parents. While she was suffering through drug-induced seizures, the chemical equivalent of shock therapy, she was also provided with art materials by her doctor, Luis Morales, and encouraged to draw as part of the healing process. The sketches bear witness to Carrington’s exquisite draftsmanship, imagination and creativity. Several of them relate directly to paintings she completed in 1941- 42 following her release from the hospital, her journey to New York and reconnection with expatriate surrealist friends, including André and Jacqueline Breton, Stella Snead, Luis Buñuel, Amédée Ozenfant, Max Ernst and Peggy Guggenheim. It is being exhibited to the public for the first time.
Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art is pleased to announce the presentation of a rare original sketchbook by Leonora Carrington, drawn in October 1940 while the 23 year old artist was involuntarily committed to the Sanatario Morales, a psychiatric institution in Santander, Spain. Following the forced separation from her lover Max Ernst and the onset of World War II, Carrington suffered a nervous breakdown and was institutionalized by her British parents. While she was suffering through drug-induced seizures, the chemical equivalent of shock therapy, she was also provided with art materials by her doctor, Luis Morales, and encouraged to draw as part of the healing process.
Informally titled “Sketches from Down Below,” this is one of only two known sketchbooks from this period. One that is dated September, 1940 was broken up many years ago and the pages are dispersed throughout various collections. The one we are exhibiting is still intact after 78 years and consists of original front and back covers and 30 graphite drawings.
The sketches bear witness to Carrington’s exquisite draftsmanship, imagination and creativity. Several of them relate directly to paintings she completed in 1941- 42 following her release from the hospital, her journey to New York and reconnection with expatriate surrealist friends, including André and Jacqueline Breton, Stella Snead, Luis Buñuel, Amédée Ozenfant, Max Ernst and Peggy Guggenheim. The notebook was acquired by a private collector from the Surrealist dealer Julien Levy (1906-1981), who obtained it directly from the artist.
Mary-Anne Martin Fine Art is pleased to announce the “discovery” of an important painting by the Mexican Muralist, David Alfaro Siqueiros, the 1937 Self-Portrait with Mirror. Known only from a black and white photograph, this extraordinary painting, purchased from the artist by the American composer George Gershwin (1898-1937), has been referred to as “lost” for about 80 years. Gershwin died of a brain tumor at the age of 38 and so the history of the painting marks the end of a dramatic and tragic story. Gershwin’s estate was inherited by his mother and the painting hung for most of its existence on Central Park West in New York City.
Not seen in public since early 1937, the work will be shown this summer in a mini exhibition at Mary-Anne Martin Fine Art, surrounded by other key works by Siqueiros, including: Landscape (Taxco), c. 1931, La Patrona, 1939, Portrait of Señorita Martita Orrego Matte, 1942, and The Good Neighbor Policy, 1951
Known for his active participation in Left Wing politics – he was a Communist and also fought on the side of the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War – Siqueiros figured prominently in the history of avant-garde art. In 1936 he founded his “Experimental Workshop” at 5 West Fourteenth Street in New York City. The mission of the Workshop was to explore the use of modern industrial materials such as Duco (pyroxylin) and other synthetics, using tools like spray guns, palette knives and a technique he called “controlled accidents.” His most promising student was the 24 year old Jackson Pollock, whose later “drip paintings” changed the history of post-war American art.
Self-Portrait with Mirror, which has survived in near-perfect condition, is airbrushed with pyroxylin on a sheet of Bakelite, a highly unusual combination. Although the painting has been written about extensively, and even appears on the cover of a book, no art historian had seen it in color or examined it in person until two weeks ago, when, at our invitation, esteemed Siqueiros expert, Dr. Irene Herner Reiss traveled from Mexico to study the painting and was thrilled to see this famous work at last.
While they had met earlier, the friendship between George Gershwin and Siqueiros developed on a trip that Gershwin made to Mexico in 1935, led by the psychoanalyst Dr. Gregory Zilboorg. Gershwin, an amateur painter, hit it off with Siqueiros right away and invited him to paint his portrait, which after many changes and amplifications resulted in the large and elaborate canvas, George Gershwin in a Concert Hall, 1936. Gershwin, a serious collector of Modern art, was a great admirer of Siqueiros’s work and owned five of his paintings. He contributed generously to the funding of The Experimental Workshop, and one of the works he owned, Proletarian Victim, 1933 was donated to the MoMA, New York by the Estate of George Gershwin.
Mary-Anne Martin Fine Art is excited to present Self-Portrait with Mirror to the public for the first time, in glowing color.
Self-Portrait with Mirror exemplifies David Alfaro Siqueiros’s deep interest in radical techniques and materials. Painted in 1936, while Siqueiros was conducting the Experimental Workshop in New York City at 5 West 14th St., the work is airbrushed with pyroxylin on a sheet of Bakelite. Pyroxylin (Duco) paint is a nitrocellulose paint manufactured for the automobile industry. Dr. Irene Herner, the highly esteemed expert on Siqueiros, visited Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art to view and research the painting. The work was taken out of the frame so that its highly unusual medium could be examined.
Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art presents a mini exhibition of seminal works by David Alfaro Siqueiros, spanning twenty years of his career. Self-Portrait with Mirror (1937) is being exhibited to the public for the first time since 1937.
Works on view
Landscape (Taxco), c. 1931
Self-Portrait with Mirror, 1937
La Patrona, 1939
Retrato de Señorita Martita Orrego Matte, 1942 (Private Collection)
The Good Neighbor Policy, 1951 (Private Collection)
As part of Master Drawings New York 2017, Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art will exhibit a selection of works on paper by Surrealist artist Leonora Carrington celebrating the centennial year of her birth. Carrington’s intelligence, humor, and technical skills are readily apparent in her drawings, which offer viewers an insight into her artistic process and vivid imagination. The show will include studies for paintings and prints, costume sketches and set designs, diary notes and political satire. These 30 works span Carrington’s career, and many are being exhibited publicly for the first time.
Master Drawings New York runs from January 21 through January 28. Please visit the Master Drawings website or call the gallery for hours. There is a preview at the gallery on January 20, from 4 to 8 pm. The Carrington exhibition at Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art will continue through Wednesday, February 22. Selected paintings and sculptures will also be on view.
The following is a selection of works from the exhibition.
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Map of Down Below
ink on paper
12¾ × 9 7/8 inches (32.4 × 25.1 cm)
The drawing Map of Down Below represents the tragic end of the love affair between Leonora Carrington and Max Ernst, and it served as an illustration of Carrington’s written account of the events that took place after Ernst was arrested in France as an enemy alien and sent to an internment camp in 1940. Published in André Breton’s magazine VVV in 1944, Down Below recounts Carrington’s escape to Spain where she experienced a nervous break-down and was later committed to a sanatorium in Santander. In the drawing, she maps out her journey towards being healed. Though this episode in Carrington’s life is often written about as real madness, by her own account it is evident that Carrington regarded it as her last stand against her family’s and society’s expectations of her and her continued resistance to conforming to them. Nevertheless, the experience of having been in a madhouse made Carrington a Surrealist ideal: the beautiful young girl who had survived the power of the irrational mind.
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Brothers and Sisters Have I None
ink on paper
14 5/8 × 18 5/8 inches (37.3 × 47.4 cm)
signed, dated and inscribed with various numerical references
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Untitled (Raven with Pink Background)
mixed media on paper
20 × 14 inches (50.8 × 35.6 cm)
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Crow Soup
pencil, ink and gouache on Arches paper
22 × 29¾ inches (55.9 × 75.6 cm)
Birds have appeared in Carrington’s work since her first paintings, done while living with Max Ernst, whose symbolic animal identity was the Superior Bird LopLop. Ravens and crows begin to appear in her writing and painting in the 1950’s, and they take on larger roles in the later part of her career. Though this watercolor is in itself a finished piece, its composition and theme are similar to a print published with the same title. This was obviously a subject of interest to Carrington, as in the course of her last decade she wrote a libretto for an Operetta, also titled Crow Soup.
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Feeding the Crocodile
pencil on paper
11 × 13¾ inches (27.9 × 34.9 cm)
signed and dated ‘Mexico, Oct. 1994’
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Study for “Symphony in Q minor”
ink and pencil on paper
8½ × 5 inches (21.6 × 12.7 cm)
This small drawing is a study for the amusing and luminous painting, Symphony in Q Minor. Though the final work depicts this fantastic orchestra in musical and celestial harmony, the drawing reflects the humor of the theme. The harp, an instrument usually associated with calm and soft music, here takes the form of an aggressive looking bird, whose literal ‘crowing’ is accompanied by the plunking and enthusiastic singing of a bizarrely dressed man. The dogs howl with open and contorted mouths, while the cow nearby has been summoned, or left speechless, by this impromptu ‘concert.’
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Study for “La gran cacería”
pencil and ink on paper
10 × 7¾ inches (25.4 × 19.7 cm)
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Untitled (Butterfly with Aura)
gouache and pencil on paper
13 5/8 × 15 7/8 inches (34.6 × 40.3 cm)
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Woman Sketching Cabbage
pencil on paper
6 × 9 inches (15.2 × 22.9 cm)
As a young artist, Carrington studied in the London academy of Amédée Ozenfant whose Purist principles placed great emphasis on technique, as she would recall in a 2008 interview: “Ozenfant was crucial to my development. As a good Purist, he insisted obsessively that we understand the chemistry of everything…” making her “draw an apple for six months to accomplish a one line drawing.”
Woman Drawing a Cabbage illustrates not only Carrington’s skill, but also the importance of technique. The Cabbage holds great meaning for Carrington, and she often includes it in paintings and poems:
“The Cabbage is a rose, the Blue Rose, The Alchemical Rose, The Blue Deer (Peyote), and the eating of the God is ancient knowledge, but only recently known to ‘civilized occidental’ Humans who have experienced many phenomena, and have recently written many books that give accounts of the changing worlds which these people have seen when they ate these plants. Although the properties of the cabbage are somewhat different, it also screams when dragged out of the earth and plunged into boiling water or grease – forgive us, cabbage.”
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) Farmacia del ahorro
ink and pencil on paper
10¼ × 14 inches (26.0 × 35.6 cm)
signed with initials and dated 2002
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) CEOs (Los ejecutivos)
ink on paper
7¼ × 11¾ inches (18.4 × 29.8 cm)
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) “And he came out of heaven and said”
ink on paper
6 × 7¾ inches (15.2 × 19.7 cm)
signed in pencil and inscribed in pen’ May 28th Sunday’
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) A Real Nightmare
ink and color pencil on paper
6 × 7¾ inches (15.2 × 19.7 cm)
Inscription: A real nightmare to walk the streets in Mexico City, leers, jeers, aggression – we hate it. I was one but I pretended to be two
LEONORA CARRINGTON (1917-2011) So We Walked with Our Pet Animal Coyotegata
ink and pencil on paper
6 × 7 7/8 inches (15.2 × 19.9 cm)
signed and inscribed
Inscription: So we walked with our pet animal Coyotegata [coyote-cat]
This imaginative drawing presents a solution to the problem of street harassment that Carrington depicted in A Real Nightmare [previous slide]. A fantastical creature, the pet “Coyotegata,” protects the women as they walk, causing the leering men to flee in fear.
We invite you to visit Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art at Art Basel Miami Beach (Booth D2), November 30-December 4, 2016. The gallery will exhibit recent acquisitions and a selection of “classic” inventory including masterworks by Mario Carreño, Leonora Carrington, Gunther Gerzso, Matta, Carlos Mérida, Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Rufino Tamayo, Francisco Toledo, and Remedios Varo. We will also feature new works in glass and on paper by Panamanian artist Isabel De Obaldía.
ISABEL DE OBALDÍA (b. 1957) Poet (Diosedú Tará)
mold blown glass, engraved on a lathe with diamond wheels
28 × 12 × 7½ inches (71.1 × 30.5 × 19.1 cm)
signed and dated 2016
ISABEL DE OBALDÍA (b. 1957) Amber Howler
mold blown glass engraved on a lathe with diamond wheels
14 × 4½ inches (35.6 × 11.4 cm)
signed and dated 2016
ISABEL DE OBALDÍA (b. 1957) El Secreto
mixed media on heavy watercolor paper
78 × 42 inches (198.1 × 106.7 cm)
signed and dated 2016
DIEGO RIVERA (1886-1957) Firewood Sellers (Vendedores de leña)
watercolor, ink, and graphite on linen
12 3/8 × 18¾ inches (31.4 × 47.6 cm)
signed and dated ’35
DAVID ALFARO SIQUEIROS (1896-1974) La Patrona
Duco (pyroxilyn paint) on composition board
29¾ × 24 inches (75.6 × 61.0 cm)
DAVID ALFARO SIQUEIROS (1896-1974) Retrato de Señorita Martita Orrego Matte
pyroxylin on pressed board
45 5/8 × 35¼ inches (115.9 × 89.5 cm)
signed and dated 1942
DAVID ALFARO SIQUEIROS (1896-1974) Bosque en llamas (Forest in Flames)
pyroxylin on masonite
48 × 31½ inches (121.9 × 80.0 cm)
signed and dated ’56
RUFINO TAMAYO (1899 – 1991) El Comensal
oil on canvas
23¾ × 17¾ inches (60.3 × 45.1 cm)
signed and dated ’38
FRANCISCO TOLEDO (b. 1940) Juárez atraviesa el río de las calaveras rodantes (Juárez Crossing the River of Rolling Skulls)
watercolor and tempera on heavy paper
25 3/8 × 40 1/8 inches (64.5 × 102.0 cm)
Please visit Mary-Anne Martin|Fine Art at The ADAA Art Show at the Park Avenue Armory, March 2-6 (Booth A15). The gallery is featuring works by Mexican and Latin American artists who were influenced by 20th Century avant-garde European movements.