Bernard Jacobson Gallery at Art Basel
Art | Basel
June 13 - 16 2013
Hall 2.0 | Booth C3

Bernard Jacobson Gallery is delighted to announce its participation at Art | Basel, Switzerland from 13-16 June 2013. Exhibition highlights will include three recent works by European painter Pierre Soulages, an impressive survey of collages by American abstract expressionist Robert Motherwell, as well as one of his celebrated Elegy to the Spanish Republic paintings from 1974-75, and one of Tom Wesselmann's Sunset Nude paintings from 2004.

Elegy to the Spanish Republic No. 130 (1974-75) is a rare example of one of Robert Motherwell's most important series of work. The artist described his Elegies as "celebrations of death, songs of mourning, elegies - barbaric and severe." The large black and white motif engaged Motherwell throughout his career and is considered his most substantial and defining contribution to modern art. The Elegies appear in the collections of all the major art museums, including MOMA New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and Tate, London.

A comprehensive selection of collages by Motherwell will complement the London gallery's current exhibition Robert Motherwell: Collage, which presents over thirty works from the 1950s up until his death in 1991. The exhibition coincides with the Peggy Guggenheim Collection's current show Robert Motherwell: The Early Collages, which focuses on his collages from the 1940s, and will travel to the Guggenheim New York in September 2013. The works on show in Basel range from the 1960s - 1990s, and present examples of Motherwell's major innovation with the form, the torn edge - a technique that reflected his love of working with paper, and his commitment to automatism. Working on a much larger scale than his European counterparts had attempted, Motherwell Americanized the medium, and discovered a passion and aptitude for collage which spurred him to continue with it throughout his career. As he recounts, "I felt a magical release. I took to it, as they say, as a duck to water." In his collages from the 1960s onwards, Motherwell incorporated "everyday" fragments echoing Schwitters' merz technique developed 40 years earlier. Collages such as Country Life (1967), featuring a mailing label from Country Life magazine, Harvest 23 with Ultramarine (1972), which incorporates a fragment from the German brand of cigarettes, and M (1991), featuring sheet music from Mozart's Rondo in D for piano are examples of this.

Three recent paintings by Pierre Soulages, Peinture, 130 x 81 cm, 30 Novembre 2010, Peinture, 130 x 81 cms, 13 Avril 2011, and Peinture, 130 x 81 cm, 12 Fevrier 2012, present exquisite examples of the artist's famous "outrenoir" technique. Developed towards the end of the 1970s, Soulages' black paintings are revered for their abstract, painterly explorations with light and texture. With a major retrospective at the Pompidou in 2009, and most recently at the Musee des Beaux-Arts in Lyon (2012) and the Academie de France a Rome (2013) and the opening of his own museum in Rodez this year, Pierre Soulages is one of Europe's most celebrated painters.

Notes to editors

Bernard Jacobson Gallery was founded in 1969, publishing and distributing prints by artists including Robyn Denny, Lucian Freud, David Hockney, Leon Kossoff, Henry Moore, Richard Smith, Ed Ruscha and William Tillyer. By the mid 1970s, having established himself as one of the major dealers in the international print boom, Jacobson began to show paintings and sculpture. The early 1980s saw the gallery open branches in Los Angeles and New York, expanding the range of international artists to include West Coast American artists such as Joe Goode and Larry Bell, as well as modern British masters such as David Bomberg, Ivon Hitchens, Peter Lanyon, Ben Nicholson, William Scott, Stanley Spencer and Graham Sutherland. From 1997, the gallery moved more firmly into American and international art, with shows of artists such as Kenneth Noland, Jules Olitski, Larry Poons and Frank Stella. Recently, the gallery has held shows by the American artists Robert Motherwell and Helen Frankenthaler, Robert Rauschenberg, Roy Lichtenstein and Tom Wesselmann, while European painters include Bram Bogart and Pierre Soulages and British artists William Tillyer, Bruce McLean and Marc Vaux.

In 2011 the gallery opened a new space in New York on East 71st street with an inaugural exhibition entitled 60 Years of British Art followed by 21 Americans, the latter showing work by major American artists including Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, Roy Lichtenstein and Robert Rauschenberg. Bernard Jacobson Gallery also has a strong presence at major international art fairs participating at Expo Chicago; Frieze Masters, London; and the prestigious Art Basel fairs in Hong Kong, Basel and Miami Beach.