Since the early 1980s, Christopher Wool has investigated the relevance of painting in an age of mass reproduction. The monotypes on view, made just a few months ago, exemplify his method of transferring images, sometimes taken directly from his earlier work, through various techniques and in a range of scales. In these layered works, the underlying photogravures, printed either in red or in black, borrow the composition of a large screenprinted painting by the artist, itself derived from an earlier drawing he made of a photograph he took showing splashes of beer on a wall. The unique red and black impressions on top were obtained by inking corrugated cardboard and running it through a press, often multiple times. The resulting works skillfully combine two distinct and usually mutually incompatible modes of image making: the spontaneous, expressive gesture and the deliberate, mediated multiple.
Inbox: Christopher Wool
MoMA January 7–February 16, 2015
- MoMA, Floor 1, Museum Lobby