Minus Space is pleased to present the solo exhibition John Zinsser: Oil Paintings. This is the Brooklyn-based artist’s first solo exhibition at the gallery.
For three decades, John Zinsser has produced thoroughly innovative and informed, process-based paintings. A native New Yorker, he came of age as an artist during the late 1980s and early 1990s alongside other now established abstract painters, including Richmond Burton, Gail Fitzgerald, Daniel Levine, Carl Ostendarp, Kate Shepherd, Cary Smith, Dan Walsh, Mary Weatherford, and Stephen Westfall, among others. Zinsser’s material paintings and conceptual drawings often pay homage to, expand upon, and subvert earlier precedents in NYC’s painting history, from Abstraction Expressionism to Radical Painting to Post-Modernism.
For his exhibition at the gallery, Zinsser will present a new set of oil and enamel paintings on stretched canvas, including several ambitious large-format works. His paintings commonly consist of two hues, one applied directly over the other. His color sensibility is precise and individual, arcing toward close-value monochromatic or pulsingly optical in nature. Zinsser begins each painting with a single ground color that is applied smoothly and evenly, occasionally leaving behind translucent striations. Next, and in stark contrast, Zinsser applies a second color often in thick, visceral marks with a heavily-loaded brush, palette knife, squeegee, or other device. His gestures are analytical and assume a wide variety of forms, such as interwoven networks, orthogonal grids, and repeating patterns.
John Zinsser (b.1961, New York, NY; lives Brooklyn, NY) has exhibited his work internationally since the late 1980s, including solo and group exhibitions throughout United States and Europe. He recently mounted solo exhibitions at Von Lintel Gallery (Los Angeles, CA), Peter Blake Gallery (Laguna Beach, CA), Philip Slein Gallery (St. Louis, MO), Larry Becker Contemporary Art (Philadelphia, PA), Graham Gallery (New York, NY), and Kunstgalerie Bonn (Germany).
In 2013, Zinsser co-curated the survey exhibition Julian Pretto Gallery here at the gallery, the first show to examine the history and legacy of gallerist Julian Pretto (1945-1995) and his fabled downtown New York galleries, active during the mid-1970s through the mid-1990s. Zinsser was also included in our recent group exhibitions Brant / Brennan / Zinsser in 2016 and Some Artists in 2014. In 2012, Zinsser’s early work was presented in the exhibition Conceptual Abstraction curated by Pepe Karmel and Joachim Pissarro at Hunter College / Times Square Gallery. The exhibition reprised the groundbreaking exhibition of the same name mounted at Sidney Janis Gallery in 1991.
Zinsser’s paintings can be found in museum and private collections internationally, including the Mint Museum (Charlotte, NC), Wadsworth Atheneum (Hartford, CT), Richard Brown Baker Collection, Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, CT), and Sammlung Goetz, (Munich), as well as in numerous corporate collections.
In addition to his artistic work, Zinsser is a writer, curator, and lecturer. He co-founded the Journal of Contemporary Art in 1988 and has written extensively for publications, such as Art in America, ARTS, Flash Art, ArtNet, and Tema Celeste, among others. Zinsser is Assistant Professor at The New School.