In what has become an annual event, Ed Moses fills two galleries with new paintings this Spring. The 84-year old Los Angeles painter has produced a group of innovative works, layering and juxtaposing multiple patterns with bold color. The large-scale paintings of Ed Moses will be presented in simultaneous shows at Frank Lloyd Gallery and Greenfield Sacks Gallery. The two galleries are collaborating in order to present the strength and power of the veteran Los Angeles painter.
Energetic and full of light, these works exude the confidence of decades of experience with painting. Moses often characterizes his “mutations” from one series of paintings to the next. These new paintings combine talking heads with floral patterns, and place figure and flower side-by-side. The overlays and chance occurrences produce transformations and mutations. Moses has transformed repetitive flat patterns into abstraction, and the viewer is left with a vibrating, pulsating interaction of color and vitality.
Although the viewing audience knows Moses as an abstract painter, it’s important to remember that there are sources for the new work. In the early 1960s, Moses produced a series of drawings known collectively as the “Rose Drawings”. These drawings were based on an inexpensive Mexican oilcloth pattern of roses, and drawn as a dense, repeating all-over pattern. By 1963, the “Rose” drawings had fully blossomed into the large 4-panel screen that is in the collection of LACMA.
The stenciled heads come in two forms: the “Screamers” and the “Poets”. Both derive from a series of paintings Moses made during the early 1990s. Now, incorporated into the field of floral patterning, they reappear and morph into a conversation---with themselves and with the history of Ed Moses’ work. The new paintings, infused with color, refer back to his early obsessive patterning and mark-making.
Moses has been exhibiting since 1949, and was part of the original group of artists from the legendary Ferus Gallery. His work was documented in a major retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in 1996. Museum collections include the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, the Menil Foundation, the Museum of Modern Art, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art, among others.