Malcolm Mooney

Event  |  Reviews  |  Comments
Installation View © Courtesy of the artist & White Columns
Malcolm Mooney

320 W. 13th St.
New York, NY 10014
February 5th, 2011 - March 5th, 2011

(212) 924-4212
Tue-Sat 12-6


White Columns is proud to present a rare solo exhibition by Malcolm Mooney, an artist, poet, and musician currently based in Calgary, Canada and New York. This is White Columns third collaboration with Mooney following on from our 2007 presentation of his illustrated poetry in our Bulletin Board, and his 2008 musical performance as a part of Fia Backstrom’s project ‘That social space between speaking and meaning.’

In a statement relating to his current project Mooney has said:

“Mel Edwards, Frank Gehry and John Chamberlain are major influences for this exhibition. Mel Edwards exhibited Lynch Fragment as part of a solo exhibition entitled ‘Melvin Edwards Sculpture: A Thirty-Year Retrospective 1963-1993’, at Neuberger Museum of Art, State University of New York at Purchase, New York. In 1962, years before this show had opened, I was attending Boston University in The School of Fine and Applied Arts. Lloyd Lillie, my sculpture teacher was demonstrating the art of creating reliefs with clay and making plaster molds to capture the initial structure. Over the years I would see relief works by artists in metal, ceramic, and stone -- and although, with my father, I had visited MoMA’s courtyard and saw the large reliefs by Matisse, none were as impressive and satisfying as Mel Edwards Lynch Fragments. Much later, a film on Frank Gehry showing a very improvised approach to designing architecture brought me around to Matisse’s sculptural reliefs again and his approach to abstraction and the figure. John Chamberlain's crushed car sculptures are also fragments, like Lynch Fragments they are a part of the landscape and American history. The cardboard bales are a direct result of my looking at these objects as part of a familiar vernacular. The inspirational thought brought about by Edward’s reliefs, Lynch Fragments, Gehry's improvised method of designing architecture, and the fragments of automobile parts formed, by Chamberlain, into a sculptural composition, moving abstract painting into three dimensional sculpture, led me to the paper sculptures as abstract reliefs.

With the continuation of a line of art history, and the addition of my story, this show is a tribute to Edwards, Gehry and Chamberlain.

Malcolm said: “This show is dedicated to me!”

Malcolm Mooney is an artist, poet, and musician, and one of the most celebrated figures in contemporary music circles. He was the original vocalist with the seminal late-1960s/1970s German rock band CAN. Speaking of Mooney’s contribution to Can’s development founding-member Holger Czukay has said: “Can wasn’t sure which way to go musically until Malcolm Mooney jumped up to the microphone one day and pushed us into A RHYTHM.” Can’s rhythmical legacy can be traced through virtually all subsequent developments in contemporary music (and beyond), from post-punk experimentation of the late 1970s to today’s post-disco scenes. Mooney’s recordings with Can remain among the most influential of the past forty years. Mooney appears on Can’s first two albums ‘Monster Movie’ (1969) and ‘Soundtracks’ (1970). He left the band in 1970, returning to the United States to focus on his own artistic development. In 1986 Mooney rejoined Can to record the reunion album ‘Rite Time.’ Since then Mooney has continued to make art, write, and work on musical projects including 1998’s ‘Malcolm Mooney & The Tenth Planet,’ amongst others. Malcolm Mooney has performed and exhibited his art work extensively over the past twenty years. He received an MFA from California State University in 1987, and a BFA from Boston University’s School of Fine Arts and Applied Arts in 1979.