Miles McEnery Gallery is pleased to announce “High Rises and Double Vision: Images of New York,” a presentation of new works by Brian Alfred. The exhibition will open 5 September at 525 West 22nd Street and remain on view through 5 October 2019. A public reception will be held for the artist on 5 September from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated publication featuring an essay by Pac Pobric. Additionally, in collaboration with Grimm Artisanal Ales, Alfred’s work will be featured on the label of a new line of beer entitled “City Vision.”
Brian Alfred’s paintings celebrate everyday imagery of New York City and bring new perspective to the evolving histories of some of its greatest landmarks. By recreating iconic structures, like the Empire State Building, as well as more ordinary encounters, such as a flower shop or storefront, Alfred observes a New York that is ever-changing and developing. Taking note from renowned architect and urban planner, Le Corbusier—“New York is not a finished or completed city.”
Among Alfred’s subjects are monuments whose cultural significance and actual fruition differ: the Statue of Liberty frowns down on the city for which she serves as a beacon of hope; a subway stop entitled “West 4th Street-Washington Square” is accessible from neither West 4th Street nor Washing ton Square. The city is riddled with peculiar locations that deceive the eye and the mind. In this new series of works, Alfred captures the duality of New York life—appearance versus application— and examines this double vision by calling into question the sights and scenery we experience daily.
Alfred navigates these complex themes using an approach characterized by sharp lines and blocked colors. Tightly-cropped compositions manipulate the viewer’s perception of space, conflating overlapping buildings, signage, and other urban elements. These vibrant, city-shaped configurations capture ephemeral moments: the view through the gap between two skyscrapers, the contour of a passing storefront from a car window, and a downward glance into a subway entrance. While they might not last long, these unique fields of vision are fundamental parts of the experience of the city.
The exhibition at 525 West 22nd Street presents a city both grounded in history and rapidly changing. Alfred implores the viewer to see beyond its singularity. With this new body of work, Brian Alfred welcomes us to his New York.
Brian Alfred (b. 1974 in Pittsburgh, PA) received his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1997 from Pennsylvania State University and his Master of Fine Arts degree in 1999 from Yale University. He studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Madison, ME in 1999.
He has had numerous solo exhibitions internationally. Recent solo exhibitions include “Future Shock,” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, N Y; “ Techno Garden,” Maho Kubota Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; “In Praise of Shadows,” Ameringer | McEnery | Yohe, New York, NY; “It Takes A Million Years to Become Diamonds So Let’s Just Burn Like Coal Until The Sky Is Black,” Ameringer | McEnery | Yohe, New York, NY; “New Animations,” Hezi Cohen Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel; “Beauty in Danger,” Salon 94 Video Wall, New York, NY; “Storms and Stress,” Hezi Cohen Gallery, Tel Aviv, Israel; “It’s Already the End of the World,” Frist Center for Visual Art, Nashville, TN; “Co-op, ” Giraud Pissarro Ségalot, New York, NY; and “Rise Above,” Haunch of Venison, London, United Kingdom.
Selected group exhibitions include “Belief in Giants, ” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; “Fixed Contained,” Kotaro Nukaga Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; “Alex Katz, Brian Alfred, Guy Yanai, Laurel Nakadate, Taro Komiya, Ryunosuke Yasui: Door Into Summer / M’s collection +,” Maho Kubota Gallery, Tokyo, Japan; “Art on Link,” Art on LINK /NYC Kiosks, New York, NY; “ The Frame," Samsung Art TV, Samsung, USA; “Like Oxygen,” Mountain Gallery, Brooklyn, NY; “Room with a view,” EDDYSROOM, Brooklyn, NY; and “Audacious: Contemporary Artists Speak Out,” Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO.
His work may be found in the permanent collections of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; Cleveland Clinic Art Foundation Program, Lyndhurst, OH; Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO; Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, NY; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX; Montclair Art Museum, Montclair, NJ; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia; New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT; Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, CA; Phoenix Museum of Art, Phoenix, AZ; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; University Museum of Contemporary Art , University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Amherst , M A; Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield Corporate Art Collection, Des Moines, IA, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY.
Alfred is the host of the podcast “Sound & Vision,” which is continually ranked among the top visual arts podcasts worldwide. He has recorded over 169 conversations with artists and musicians since its inception.
Brian Alfred lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.