Mike Kelley. Timeless Painting

Hauser & Wirth
November 12, 2019 - January 25, 2020
548 West 22nd Street
New York 10011


Over the course of his four-decade career, Mike Kelley generated a remarkably diverse oeuvre in an array of media, conflating so-called high culture and low culture, critiquing prevailing aesthetic conventions, and combining traditional notions of the sacred and the profane. This exhibition, organized in collaboration with the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts, features paintings from different series created over a 15-year period, between 1994 and 2009, spotlighting the breadth of the artist’s engagement with the medium of painting. 

Organized by guest curator Jenelle Porter, ‘Mike Kelley. Timeless Painting’ takes both its title and conceptual starting point from the series that gave rise to many of the works on view, and for which ‘the compositional approach,’ Kelley stated, ‘is to be read as outside of the influence of historical aesthetic development.’ Featuring examples from twelve bodies of work, including The Thirteen Seasons, Cult Paintings, and Missing Time Color Exercises, this exhibition highlights Kelley’s remarkable exploration of painting in color. The exhibition will present, for the first time in the United States, Kelley’s mixed-media installation ‘Profondeurs Vertes,’ (2006) the artist’s ode to paintings in the collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts that captivated him as a young person. 

The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue produced by Hauser & Wirth Publishers in collaboration with the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts. This book will include images of the complete series of works from which the exhibition draws, as well as texts by visual artists responding to Kelley’s work and an introduction by Jenelle Porter. Contributors include Edgar Arceneaux with Kurt Forman, Carroll Dunham, Daniel Guzmán, Richard Hawkins, Jay Heikes, Jamian Juliano-Villani, Mary Reid Kelley, Laurie Simmons, and Christina Quarles.

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