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MCA Denver opens three new exhibitions
Andrew Jensdotter, Jean Michel Basquiat (detail), 2018. Carved latex on canvas, 84.65 x 78.74 inches. Courtesy the artist and Gildar Gallery, Denver.

DENVER, CO.- This winter, MCA Denver presents three new exhibitions: Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting; Amanda Wachob: Tattoo This; and Andrew Jensdotter: Flak. The exhibitions open February 14 and run through May 26, 2019.

In the coming season, MCA Denver takes a look at the influences on and new approaches to painterly abstraction. “We are proud to present work by over a dozen artists, each of whom has cultivated a singular method of working, along with 8 distinctive paintings by the legendary Georgia O’Keeffe,” said Nora Burnett Abrams, MCA Denver’s Ellen Bruss Curator. “Together, these three exhibitions will offer visitors a broad look at abstraction, ranging from O’Keeffe, a celebrated, stylistic trailblazer, to Amanda Wachob, who has innovated a technique that allows her to tattoo delicate abstract images onto human bodies.”

Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting
February 14–May 26, 2019

Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting brings together a select group of artists whose work resonates with that of Georgia O'Keeffe. From her formal innovations, to her ambition to transcribe her ideas and emotions, to her distinctive approach to abstraction and the landscape of New Mexico, O'Keeffe's legacy is identifiable in the work of several generations of painters. These artists share her interest in capturing what Jerry Saltz refers to as the "objective and subjective all at once." That is, in their art, the physical world is neither subjected to, nor victorious over the imagination of the artist, but rather, the two are continuously at play.

The painters gathered here explore a set of formal qualities pioneered by O’Keeffe and modernists of her circle. This is not an exhibition that pays homage to O’Keeffe’s “Santa Fe style” or brings together her paintings with those of other artists based on mere iconographic affinities. Rather, it investigates the ways O’Keeffe’s distinctive formal innovations of scale, space, use of color, and framing, among other compositional devices, remain relevant to painters working today. This exhibition is designed to be an artist-driven experience for visitors that seriously assesses—from a very unique angle—contemporary painting and delivers a fresh view of O’Keeffe’s contribution to the history of landscape painting and abstraction.

Inspired by the 2009 exhibition Georgia O'Keeffe: Abstraction, the Whitney Museum of American Art's long-overdue exploration of the artist's place in the history of modernist abstraction, Aftereffect initiates an equally overdue assessment of O'Keeffe's lasting influence in the art world today. The artists in the exhibition have found in O'Keeffe's work what the Whitney Museum's exhibition demonstrated: a tradition of modernist painting distinct from Jackson Pollock and the Abstract Expressionists. Aftereffect: Georgia O'Keeffe and Contemporary Painting offers both a reassessment of O'Keeffe's contribution to the history of American painting and introduces fresh ideas about
the state of painting today.

In addition to 8 works by Georgia O’Keeffe, the exhibition will feature recent work by Jeffrey Gibson, Mary Heilmann, Emily Joyce, Matt Connors, Carrie Moyer, Mary Weatherford, Lesley Vance, Corey Drieth, Loie Hollowell, Gretchen Marie Schaefer, Leslie Smith III, and Melissa Thorne.

Aftereffect: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Painting is curated by Elissa Auther, Windgate Research Curator, Museum of Arts and Design, New York.

Amanda Wachob: Tattoo This
February 14–May 19, 2019

Vanguard tattoo artist Amanda Wachob uses a tattoo machine and ink to create art on canvas, paper, silk, fruit, and leather, in addition to human bodies. Inspired largely by modernist painting, in 2008 she pioneered a unique tattoo style incorporating brushstrokes, washes, paint splatters and spills, commonly referred to as “watercolor technique.” Since 2008, she has also been using tattoo machines and ink to push the boundaries of her field and make works for gallery walls. Wachob not only advances tattooing as an autonomous art form but also brings the medium into closer dialogue with the wider domain of contemporary art.

Born in Buffalo, New York, Amanda Wachob studied photography at the State University of New York at Purchase. Among numerous gallery exhibitions, she has shown her work at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York and the New York Historical Society, and completed projects with the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In 2015, Ad Age recognized her as one of the 50 “Most Creative People of the Year.” She lives and works in Brooklyn.

The exhibition is curated by Adam Lerner, Mark G. Falcone "MaFa" Director and Chief Animator. Her exhibition will be accompanied by an Artist in Residency Program where Wachob will be giving tattoos in her gallery.

Andrew Jensdotter: Flak
February 14–May 26, 2019

Andrew Jensdotter: Flak opens in the museum’s Whole Room Gallery on February 14, 2019. This marks the artist’s first solo museum exhibition.

Since completing his MFA at the University of Colorado, Boulder in 2014, Jensdotter has honed a process that synthesizes abstraction and figuration: over a period of months, he paints layers of representational imagery, each layer successively obscuring the others, then meticulously cuts into the built-up surface to create a variegated field of color. It is his singular process that defines these “carved paintings.”
In addition to several of these carved works, Flak features a group of new paintings that furthers Jensdotter’s experimentation with figuration and abstraction and additive and subtractive methods. He makes these new works by building up layers of paint on large sheets of inexpensive plastic and then transfers the paint to canvas. The results of his new process are jagged, violent, and emotional abstractions that contrast with the painstakingly composed, pseudo-organic, carved works.

Andrew Jensdotter was born in Logan, Utah, in 1976. He holds a BFA

from Utah State University, and an MFA from the University of Colorado at Boulder. His work has been exhibited at venues around the US and has been reviewed in Frieze, Hyperallergic, and Westword. He lives and works in Aspen and Denver.
This exhibition is curated by Zoe Larkins, Assistant Curator at MCA Denver.

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