Douglas Wirls: Terrains
Exhibition Dates: October 5 - 30, 2010
Reception: Thursday, October 7, 6 - 8 pm
The Painting Center is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent work by Douglas Wirls to take place in the Project Room beginning on October 5, 2010. This show, his third at the Painting Center, will present a selection from a series of new works on paper collectively titled “Terrains.” The calligraphic drawings of Douglas Wirls are evocations of natural forces rather than depictions of nature. Characterized by a meticulous, delicate and gestural line, their rhythmic yet meandering compositions recall the brushwork of Chinese landscape painting. In these works executed in colored chalk, sumi ink and charcoal, on paper and drafting film, layers of eddying lines are raked and inscribed, creating continuous horizontal fields that swirl and seethe, extending into an indeterminate space, never reaching a horizon. Their surfaces are restless, at points nearly erupting into quiet violence. Yet, however spatial, Wirls’ works are not purely landscapes. The intricate choreography of his marks take on a life and order of their own. It is through the attraction of familiar references to nature, form and surface that the viewer is drawn to an appreciation of these energetic, enigmatic places.
Douglas Wirls has lived and worked in New York City and upstate New York for the past thirty-five years. He was educated at Tyler College of Art and the Skowhegan School. In addition to The Painting Center, his work has been recently shown by the Lohin Geduld Gallery in New York, Projects Gallery in Philadelphia, the Ober Gallery in Kent Connecticut, and the Denise Bibro Gallery in New York. Other notable exhibitions include the Philadelphia Academy and the National Academy of Design where he received the Laufman Award for drawing and the Isador Award for painting. His work is in many private and public collections, including the Butler Institute of American Art, the Pennsylvania State Museum, the New Jersey State Museum, and the Woodmere Art Museum in Woodmere PA.