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PHILIP SMITH: SIGN LANGUAGE at Jason McCoy Gallery
Exhibition Opening + Reception for the Artist November 7 
AKArt
 
 

PHILIP SMITH: SIGN LANGUAGE

Jason McCoy Gallery
November 7 – December 20, 2013

RECEPTION FOR THE ARTIST: Thursday, November 7, 6-8pm
























 

New York, NY — Opening Thursday, November 7, Jason McCoy Gallery presents PHILIP SMITH: SIGN LANGUAGE, the artist's latest body of work of psychologically-charged images, drawn from found imagery in 1950s Cold War spy manuals, lingerie ads, books on mysticism and numerology, lost magic manuals and early genetic diagrams.

Walter Robinson describes, "Like a magic act, Philip Smith’s new paintings happen right before your eyes, but you’re still not quite sure what it is you’ve seen. The pictures themselves are straightforward enough, amalgamations of simple line drawings that have been made piece by piece and then scraped away and made again. Working on a monochrome surface that is white or gray or occasionally a single color, Smith uses images that are glyph-like and diagrammatic, and therefore freighted like portents with uncertain meaning. His paintings are pale and otherworldly, palimpsests of notations made at different times for uncertain reasons, images that seem to embody the unknown in the very traces of their erasures. They remain open in their apparent randomness, images juxtaposed by chance or perhaps by an esoteric design, giving rise to a suggestive logic that is unexpected and even revelatory.”

Smith works the canvas like a physicist’s blackboard where he can postulate new image formulations and equations. The paintings are characterized by slightly visible erased imagery that serves as both memory and ghost-like images reminiscent of Smith’s childhood that was filled with séances and talking spirits. The result is a disorienting universe characteristic of Smith’s long association with both pop culture and metaphysical practices.
 
“I think of the paintings really as drawings, as if the canvas were just a large sheet of paper. This allows me to work freely and automatically as if in some sort of trance state. The result is somewhat similar to the intent of Jain paintings from India or Tibetan thangkas, which serve to open a door to another realm. This often results in a curious sensation of time travel for the viewer.”


VIEW THE EXHIBITION CATALOGUE
DOWNLOAD THE PRESS RELEASE

Date/s + Time/s
Reception for the Artist: November 7, 6-8pm
Exhibition: November 7-December 20

Location

Jason McCoy Gallery
41 East 57th Street, 11th floor 
New York 10022
 



ABOUT PHILIP SMITH


 
Philip Smith’s pictographic work was first seen in the seminal Pictures exhibition, curated by Douglas Crimp at Artists Space—which also included Robert Longo, Sherrie Levine, Troy Brauntuch and Jack Goldstein. These five artists established the movement that has become known as The Pictures Generation, that now includes Cindy Sherman, Richard Prince, Laurie Simmons and many others.
 
Recently featured in ELLE DECOR, Modern Luxury Miami, and in Artspace, Smith’s work has been included in both the Whitney and Beijing Biennial and is in the permanent collection of the Whitney, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas Museum of Art, Miami Art Museum, Detroit Institute of Art, among others. Smith first moved to NYC from Florida as a young artist, working as a writer for Andy Warhol’s Interview magazine, and going on to become managing editor of GQ.

His unusual life story has been captured in his memoir, Walking Through Walls, published by Simon and Schuster—the true story of growing up with a father who discovers that he has supernatural powers. SHOWTIME has acquired the book for a weekly television series, now in development. “Philip Smith’s compelling readable memoir of his father—a psychic, exorcist, hands-on healer, and… decorator!—is as entertaining as it is bizarre, all the way to its unexpected and deeply moving conclusion.”—John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

 
"I truly believe that the purpose of art is to open the door to another dimension or realm of perception..." —Philip Smith
 
CONTACTS
Stephen M. Cadwalader, Vice-President, Jason McCoy Gallery
T +212 319 1996 / 
stephen@jasonmccoyinc.com

Stephanie Simmons, Director, Jason McCoy Gallery
T +212 319 1996 / 
stephanie@jasonmccoyinc.com

Amy Kisch, Founder + CEO, AKArt
T +646 580 6626 / 
Amy@AKArt.com
 

IMAGES  Top: PHILIP SMITH Turkish Delight, 2013, Oil and wax on canvas, 43 x 53 inches  Bottom: Philip Smith in Studio, 2013. Photo © Guido Apicella; Elle Decor November 2013; PHILIP SMITH, Walking Through Walls

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