Jeff Bailey Gallery opens the New Year with a large group show of drawings, paintings, sculpture, and photography, an exhibition poised and eager to explore the color Grey in all its moody ramifications.
In a letter to his brother Theo, Van Gogh wrote that he had mixed 46 shades of grey that morning, just to get a feel for grey’s chromatic range. Our own Jasper Johns has been a master of grey since the mid-fifties. Younger artists use grey constantly, whether as graphite, in drawing, or as a mixed color in painting.
If black is at one extreme, and white the other, does everything that falls between qualify as grey? What makes one grey warm, another cool? Does charcoal belong to black, or is it really grey? Is photography’s nostalgia for black and white really a claim for the color grey? What if that rainbow is a bruise on the sky, as Nellie McKay asks in a song?
Thirty-seven artists, including Kay Rosen, Nathlie Provosty, Noah Post, Carol Diehl, Martin McMurray, Jennifer Coates, Wayne White, Audrey Stone, Cary Smith, Walton Ford, Mel Bochner and Will Yackulic—among many others--will answer these questions by bodying forth their answers in new works.
And what of silver? Battleships? Gym-rat hoodies? Rockefeller Center? Clouds? The sidewalks of New York?