DISPATCH - JAN 3, 2013 (8:35 a.m.)


Iconic imagery standing the test of time has given rise to a new series of paintings by Jeff Muhs. Through deconstruction, reconfiguration and combination with contemporary elements, figurative abstract paintings pair the essence of iconic historic paintings with a new perspective and bring them into the now.

"The Origin of Nymphs" - a solo show by Jeff Muhs opens on Jan 5, 2013 at Lyons Wier Gallery in Chelsea with a reception from 3 to 6 p.m. The opening will be streamed live from the gallery's website. The exhibition remains on view through Feb 9, 2013.  The show include new paintings plus concrete corseted sculpture.


"Venus and Cupid (After Pellegrini)" by Jeff Muhs, 2012. Oil on canvas, 62 x 74 inches. Courtesy of Lyons Wier Gallery, New York.


The paintings in "The Origin of Nymphs" builds upon Muhs's recent series "Another History." The paintings appropriate world-renowned iconic images to create contemporary works. The paintings retain the power of the original figurative artworks but use the visual language of abstraction to make paintings that have an edge.

"Another History" represents a departure from Muhs's earlier series of abstract paintings. Before looking to history, Muhs primarily drew inspiration from nature to create atmospheric works that vibrate with color. Forms were an integral part of the compositions. So was a Modern sensibility.

The seeds for "Another History" began to sprout through a continued study of art history and Muhs's observation that there were "...certain iconic images that sustained their compositional and communicative prominence throughout the ages. In particular, the intangible characteristics that enabled some works of art to transcend generations and time to become a part of our collective culture and art historical lexicon today," Muhs recounts, according to the exhibition information.


"Napoleon I on his Imperial Throne (After Ingres)" by Jeff Muhs, 2012. Oil on canvas, 62 x 74 inches. Courtesy of Lyons Wier Gallery, New York.


The path that led Muhs to "The Origin of Nymphs" began while he was visiting the Louvre in Paris and began admiring "La Grande Odalisque" by the French Neoclassical painter Jean-Auguste Ingres (1780-1867), according to the gallery.  Muhs was struck by the expertise of its execution and by the way the painting related to the culture of its time, as well as our own.

Eventually, intensive introspective and focused examinations of art history resulted in a new body of works for Muhs.

BASIC FACTS: "The Origin of Nymphs" - A solo show by Jeff Muhs is on view from Jan 5 to Feb 9, 2013 at Lyons Wier Gallery, 542 West 24th Street, New York, NY 10011. The nearest subway is C.E. at 23rd Street and 8th Avenue. The  gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.  For details and to view the exhibition, visit www.lyonswiergallery.com.

The Lyons Wier Gallery specializes in Conceptual Realism. They present contemporary artists who bring a fresh and interpretative spirit to their chosen genre.

Jeff Muhs is based in Southampton, NY. His work is part of collections held by Beth Rudin DeWoody, Guild Hall Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum, Time Warner, Inc., Ronald Lauder, Cantor Fitzgerald and others.

His work has been exhibited in galleries located in the Hamptons, New York City and across the United States, including California, Florida, Texas, Oregon and more.

For additional works in the "Another History" series, visit www.jeffmuhsstudio.com.


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