NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MILES McENERY GALLERY is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent paintings by Whitney Bedford. The artist’s inaugural exhibition at the gallery will open 9 September at 520 West 21st Street and remain on view through 16 October 2021. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated publication featuring an essay by Barry Schwabsky.
The artist’s most recent series of paintings, Veduta, emanates from the term applied to the representation of a landscape or vista that is essentially topographical, often identifiable and naturalistic, or imaginary and romanticized. These “view paintings” developed at a time when artists became increasingly interested in the immediate, natural world around them, preceding a time of industrialization and environmental degradation.
Bedford reinvents this eighteenth-century practice by exploring the complexities of memory and present in historical works of art. Citations of artists such as Pierre Bonnard, Paul Gauguin, Milton Avery, and Charles Burchfield constitute the foundation for Bedford’s investigation of the deteriorating natural world we inhabit. She addresses the paradoxical discord between imagination and reality, past and present, visual and conceptual, and oasis and desolation.
Schwabsky observes, “To appreciate Bedford’s Veduta paintings, it is not necessary to compare them against their sources. But doing so does enable a deeper appreciation of how, precisely, her relocation of existing painting strategies enables a dialectical viewpoint on them, one that sees them both as distant—products and symptoms of other times—and as full of possibility for the present.”
Subject matter, style, and historical context are vehicles for the artist’s conscious portrayal of the environment. Traditional landscape imagery transforms as mountains and valleys become sensational, silhouetted images and trees and shrubs become crisp, linear markings, to create vibrant, yet disquieting renditions of canonical lanscapes. Allegories of destruction and redemption, Bedford’s Veduta paintings invite the viewer to reconsider one’s perspective of the natural world.
WHITNEY BEDFORD (b. 1976 in Baltimore, MD) received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, RI, and her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of California in Los Angeles, CA.
Recent solo exhibitions include “Veduta (Vuillard Vineyard),” Susanne Vielmetter, Los Angeles, CA; Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, IL; Starkwhite, Auckland, New Zealand; “Reflections on the Anthropocene,” Vielmetter, Los Angeles, CA; “Numinous,” Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, IL; “Bohemia,” Starkwhite Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand; “The Left Coast,” Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, Culver City, CA; “Bardo Parade,” Art: Concept, Paris, France; “East of Eden,” Carrie Secrist, Chicago, IL; “Lost and Found,” Starkwhite, Auckland, New Zealand; “Night and Day,” Taymour Grahne, NewYork, NY, and “West of Eden,” Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, Culver City, CA.
Recent group exhibitions include “Do You Think it Needs a Cloud?,” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; “Shall we go, you and I while we can,” Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, IL; “Slippery Painting,” Starkwhite, Auckland, New Zealand; “20 Years,” Susanne Vielmetter, Los Angeles, CA; “Kaleidescope,” Saatchi Gallery, London, UK; “How They Ran,” Over the Influence, Los Angeles, CA;“Evolver,” LA Louver, Los Angeles,CA;“New on the Wall (N.O.W.),” Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH; “C’est Comme Vous Voulez -As You Like It,” Praz-Delavallade, Paris, France; “Anniversary Show,” Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, IL; “A Verdant Summer,” Taymour Grahne Gallery, New York, NY; “Painting: A Transitive Space,” ST PAUL ST Gallery, Auckland, New Zealand 2015; “La femme de trente ans,” Art: Concept, Paris France; “Lovers,” Starkwhite, Auckland, New Zealand; “Sargent’s Daughters,” Sargent’s Daughters, New York, NY; “Summer Group Show,” Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, Culver City, CA; “Facing the Sublime in Water, CA,” Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena, CA;“Everything Must Go,” A Project with Ceramica Suro Guadalajara, Mexico, organized by Jose Noe Suro and Eduardo Sarabia, Casey Kaplan, New York, NY; “The Gleaners: Works from the Sarah and Jim Taylor Collection,” Myhren Gallery, University of Denver, CO; “Five from LA,” Galerie Lelong, New York, NY; “Bagna Cauda,” Gallerie Art Concept, Paris, France; “Houdini: Art and Magic, 1919-1949,” The Jewish Museum, New York, NY; Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles, CA; Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, CA; Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, Madison, WI; “This Is Killing Me,” Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, North Adams, MA, and “PX - Snow Falls in the Mountains” (curated by Jan Bryant), St Paul’s Gallery, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand.
Her work is included in select collections including Eric Decelle, Brussels, Belgium; Francois Pinault Collection, Paris, France; Ginette Moulin and Guillaume Houzé Contemporary Art Collection, Paris, France; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA; Jumex Collection, Mexico City, Mexico; Marciano Art Foundation, Los Angeles, CA; Pizutti Collection, Columbus, OH; Rosa and Carlos de la Cruz, Miami, FL and The Saatchi Gallery, London, United Kingdom.
She is the recipient of awards including the Pollock Krasner Award; UCLA Darcy Hayman Award; UCLA Hammer Museum Drawing Biennial Winner; Fulbright Graduate Fellowship, Hoschule der Kunste, Berlin, Germany; Karl-Hoffer Gesellschaft Atelier, Kunstler Werkstatt Banhoff Westend, and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection Studentship, Venice, Italy.
Bedford lives and works in Los Angeles, CA.