Since the 1960s, Swiss artist John Armleder has been at the forefront of many key developments in postwar art. Often operating at the intersection of pattern, decoration, and kitsch, Armleder’s diverse body of work has consistently challenged the traditional demarcations between high and low art.
The AAM’s exhibition focuses on two of the artist’s iconic painting series: his Pour Paintings and Puddle Paintings. In each series, Armleder utilizes a process-based approach that echoes the work of such modern masters as Jackson Pollock, Helen Frankenthaler, Morris Louis, and Larry Poons. For his Pour Paintings, Armleder applies different paint colors directly onto the top of his vertically oriented canvases, allowing the poured paint to flow down the surface of the canvas, and producing a succession of diaphanous, gravity-pulled bands of saturated color. For his Puddle Paintings, Armleder pours paint onto canvases laid horizontally on his studio floor, resulting in vibrant, if slightly more frenetic compositions of pooled and spattered paint.