coinciding with the venice art biennale, gallerie dell’accademia di venezia presents ‘philip guston and the poets’ – an exhibition introducing the pre-eminent american painter in relation to the language and prose of five poets: D. H. lawrence (british, 1885 – 1930), W. B. yeats (irish, 1865 – 1939), wallace stevens (american, 1879 – 1955), eugenio montale (italian, 1896 – 1981) and T. S. eliot (american-born, british, 1888 – 1965). drawing parallels between humanist themes against selected literary works, the paintings on display present forms, images and ideas that guston explored during his lifetime.

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all images unless otherwise stated © the estate of philip guston, courtesy of the estate, gallerie dell’accademia and hauser & wirth, photos by lorenzo palmieri

 

 

the exhibition on display at gallerie dell’accademia, is organised in thematic groupings, each corresponding to selected writings and poems by one of the five poets. beginning with D. H. lawrence and his 1929 essay ‘making pictures,’ guston’s work is introduced through an exploration of the artist’s visual world, considering the very act of creation and the possibility which painting holds. 

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the exhibition goes on to follow poets W. B. yeats, wallace stevens, eugenio montale and T. S. eliot. through the parallel nature between these literary references, guston’s work could be described as invasive through his distorted depictions of familiar objects in relation to the themes explored. works detailing shoe soles, fists, and portraits use a palette of dark flesh tones and bright pinks which present an intimate yet haunting portrayal of symbols and unconscious themes, all of which flow through the works of all figures.

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  • This was one of the most beautiful exhibits I have ever seen. Philip Guston is one of my favorite artists. The Video, “A Life Lived, & Conversations with Philip Guston” by Michael Blackwood, really is helpful for those who haven’t studied art history and Philip Guston’s career. I wish it would travel so many people could see it and I could see it again.

    Barbara Arlen says:

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