Exhibition Reveals Artist’s Life in Hudson River Valley: “An Autobiography” to open at Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art

NEW PALTZ — Image available at http://hawk.newpaltz.edu/news/images/nozkowskilinn.htmlA series of abstract paintings and photographs based on geographic regions along the Hudson River titled An Autobiography: Paintings by Thomas Nozkowski and Photographs by Judy Linn will open at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art on July 23. The exhibition records, in abstract representation and photographic documentation, the sites and events that shaped Nozkowski’s life. It is on view through September 28. An opening reception that is free and open to the public will be held at the museum on Saturday, July 21 at 6pm.

The twenty works in An Autobiography reflect important experiences and memories in Nozkowski’s life. Each painting is defined by a different five-mile increment of the valley. The artist recalls: “Everything that I hold important to my life has happened along a hundred-mile stretch of the Hudson River valley. For each painting I would try to find visual images from my memories and in the physical reality of the place.” After finishing the series, Nozkowski invited Judy Linn to interpret the region in photography. Working without having seen the paintings, Linn’s photographs are also defined by the same five-mile increments.

Peter Schjeldahl, art critic for The New Yorker said “Nozkowski’s deployment of staggeringly various painterly techniques and tropes beg[s] formal analysis, which functions by identifying patterns of repetition and resemblance. Every detail of a Nozkowski feels ad hoc, thus unrepeatable, and resembles nothing but itself. To grapple with specificities of shape, color, or execution in this work is like trying to catch a thrown beachball while holding a beachball.”

While Nozkowski’s paintings are intentionally left open for viewer interpretation, Linn’s photographs ground the abstract paintings by providing what art critic Joy Hakanson Colby calls “deceptively simple, black-and-white images” depicting the same sites that inspired Nozkowski’s work. This dualistic representation, on the one hand emotional and boundless and on the other rational and definite, inspires thoughtful contemplation of both artists’ work.

Thomas Nozkowski was born in New Jersey and currently resides in New York. He counts among his numerous awards a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. Nozkowski is represented in the permanent collections of The Brooklyn Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, and others. Recent solo exhibitions have appeared at the Max Protetch Gallery, New York; the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; and Ace Contemporary Exhibitions, Los Angeles. A native of Detroit residing in New York, Judy Linn teaches at Vassar College, Pratt Institute, the School of Visual Arts, and the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College. Linn has had solo exhibitions in New York City at Feature Inc. and at PS#1. Her work is in the collections of The Whitney Museum of American Art, The Detroit Art Institute, and The Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. Photographs by Linn have appeared in Artforum and Bomb Magazine.

Summer hours for The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art are Monday through Friday, 1-4 p.m. and by appointment. The opening reception for An Autobiography: Paintings by Thomas Nozkowski and Photographs by Judy Linn is Saturday, July 21, 6-8 p.m. Thomas Nozkowski and Judy Linn will present an Artists’ Talk on Sunday, September 9 at 4 p.m. in the museum.

For additional information, call the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art: 845-257-3844 Information is also available at the Museum’s Web site: www.newpaltz.edu/museum. Regular summer hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 1:00pm to 4:00pm and by appointment. A full schedule of summer arts events at SUNY New Paltz is available online at http://hawk.newpaltz.edu/artsnews.

Images from the exhibtion are available online at http://hawk.newpaltz.edu/news/images/nozkowskilinn.html.