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  • Gary Simmons

    United States

    Art Brokerage: Gary Simmons American Artist: b. 1964. Gary Simmons was born in New York, NY in 1964. He lives and works in New York, NY. Using icons and stereotypes of American popular culture, Gary Simmons creates works that address personal and collective experiences of race and class. He is best known for his terasure drawings, in which he draws in white chalk on slate-painted panels or walls, then smudges them with his hands a technique that renders their imagery ghostly. Shortly after his graduate studies at Cal Arts, Simmons found a studio back home at a former vocational school in Manhattan, New York. His space was empty but for several old-fashioned, wooden, rolling classroom chalkboards which he began using as canvases in a series of early works about miss-education and conceptions of racial and class identity. Interested in the medium's ambiguous and impermanent nature, he worked with chalk on boards or on walls painted with chalkboard paint almost exclusively in the 1990s. In these works, he often borrowed imagery from antique cartoons which depicted black caricatures. In a wall drawing called Wall of Eyes, commissioned for the 1993 Whitney Biennial, the black surface of the board is peppered with bodiless cartoon eyes of different sizes. Considering himself primarily a sculptor, Simmons early three-dimensional work incorporated powerfully suggestive symbols of oppression including Ku Klux Klan signs, hoods and nooses. One of his large-scale wall drawings was most recently shown at Metro Pictures Gallery in Midnight Matinee, an exhibition of paintings and drawings which, like the installation Split Personality, depict semi-erased black-on-black drawings of settings from 1970's horror films. His paintings, drawings and sculptures have exhibited throughout the US and internationally. Listings wanted.

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