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Press Release - OLD

In Philip Guston: 1954-1958, L&M Arts is proud to exhibit a select group of seven paintings from this extraordinary period, including loans from the Museum of Modern Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, and important private collections.

Philip Guston's development over this short time depicts a poignant struggle between nascent figuration and abstraction, structure and raw sentiment. The artist's interest in brushstroke, touch, and construction as it simultaneously emerges and dissolves, presents itself in Painting (1954). This delicate tension between composition and expression grows increasingly palpable. In Beggar's Joys, (1954-55), the encounter erupts as a contained explosion of disintegrating form. Flat, clustered shapes grow in confidence, vibrancy, and scale in Dial, 1956, an outpouring expanding with astonishing emotion in Prague (1956), Processional (1957), and The Mirror (1957). Guston questions the classification of form as exactly realistic or abstract. This is particularly true of To Fellini (1958), an homage to filmmaker Federico Fellini, described by Michael Auping as "a cryptic theater of potential enigmatic scenes… a dense and shadowy drama in which twisting forms push their way from edge to edge."

Philip Guston: 1954-1958 will be on view from January 15 through February 28, 2009.

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