Lisson Gallery

Watch now: Sean Scully's The 12 / Dark Windows

18 May 2021

On the occasion of Sean Scully's dual-part exhibition in New York, this exhibition walkthrough, narrated by poet, historian and art critic Kelly Grovier, guides you through the new works created in the artist's New York studio throughout 2020 and 2021, while the world was rocked by a global pandemic, extensive quarantine measures, Black Lives Matter protests, political instability and mass uncertainty.

At Scully’s Chelsea studio, open exclusively for this showcase, the artist unveils a monumental new work entitled The 12 (2020), presented in its entirety for the first time. This twelve-panel piece is a grouping of Landline paintings, each with its own distinct personality ranging from spirited to sombre.

In tandem with this off-site presentation, nearby at Lisson Gallery, Scully exhibits another significant work, Dark Windows, conceived in the early months of the global crisis. This shorter sequence of five panels is characterised by the haunting, sinister presence of a black square, referencing the nihilistic declaration made by Malevich in 1915. The advent of the Dark Windows paintings represents the first time in Scully’s career that his horizons have been entirely blackened or effectively erased, suggesting a symbolic act of protest, solidarity or even of shocked silence.

An essay by Grovier about these new works will feature in the forthcoming exhibition catalogue. 'Sean Scully: The 12 / Dark Windows' is on view from 6 May – 18 June 2021 at Scully's studio (477 West 17th Street) and Lisson Gallery (508 West 24th Street). Please note that appointments are mandatory for a studio visit.

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