JUDY LEDGERWOOD Power Pose January 11 - February 9, 2019 Artist Reception: Friday, January 11, 2019, 6:00 - 8:30 PM
Judy Ledgerwood, Brain Fever, 2018, oil on canvas, 60 x 50 in
Barbara Davis Gallery is pleased to present Judy Ledgerwood’s third solo exhibition at the gallery titled, Power Pose. Small to monumental in scale, the paintings are vigorous, richly layered and fiercely colorful. Flat shapes parallel to the picture plane activate the relationship between actual space and the viewer. Ledgerwood is indebted to Modernism, in particular the language of the “grid” as defined by Rosalind Krauss in October Magazine in 1979. At the same time the artist challenges this lexicon. In contrast to the stability offered by the Modernist grid, that runs parallel and perpendicular to the edges of a canvas, Ledgerwood upends this structure with diagonal shapes that activate and destabilize the surface. This structure reflects our current cultural moment.
Ledgerwood’s painted shapes reference tapestries or quilts, aligning directly with what has been considered “women’s work.” Symbolic shapes in her work are emblems typically found in Stone Age Goddess figures such as recurring triangles, chevrons, circles, zig-zags, seed-like shapes and the flower-like quatrefoils. Color provides further content and context for these elements and is the first subjective experience presented for the viewer. Ledgerwood exploits the unique material qualities of paint to position questions of value in the painterly tradition.
Judy Ledgerwood lives and works in Chicago IL and Sawyer MI. She earned a BFA from the Art Academy of Cincinnati and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Ledgerwood is the Alice Welsh Skilling Professor of Art at Northwestern University. She has held several solo exhibitions worldwide, most recently at Bluhm Family Terrace at the Art Institute of Chicago IL (2018), Rhona Hoffman Gallery, Chicago IL (2018); Hausler Contemporary Gallery, Munich (2017); The Suburban, Milwaukee WI (2016); Tracy Williams Ltd, New York NY (2016); The Graham Foundation, Chicago IL (2014); Smart Museum of Art, Chicago, IL (2014); Rhona Hoffman Gallery, Chicago, IL (2013); among many others. She is the recipient of numerous awards including The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Award, an Artadia Award, a Tiffany Award in the Visual Arts, a National Endowment for the Arts Award, and an Illinois Art Council Award. Her work is included in several public collections including at the Art Institute of Chicago, IL, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, the Milwaukee Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, The Hammer Museum Los Angeles and the Kunstmuseum St. Gallen Switzerland, among others.