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Solo exhibition of works by influential Californian artist Ron Nagle opens in London
Ron Nagle, Frankly Speaking, 1997. Earthenware and overglaze © The artist Courtesy The Perimeter.

LONDON.- The Perimeter is presenting Midnight Stroll, a solo exhibition of works by influential Californian artist Ron Nagle. Installed throughout The Perimeter’s intimate exhibition spaces within the renovated mews building in Bloomsbury, the show is the first solo exhibition staged in the private collection space.

Midnight Stroll explores over 30 years of Nagle’s practice, creating a dialogue between Alexander V. Petalas’s collection and the artist’s personal collection from his studio. Named after a 1997 work of the same name, the exhibition features many of the small-scale intricate sculptural pieces which Nagle is best known for, with wittily titled, brightly coloured ceramic pieces shown alongside his works on paper.

Delving into the oeuvre of one of the most accomplished artists working in ceramics today, the exhibition features over 35 works in a variety of mediums. Now in his 80s, Nagle’s work has spanned multiple different disciplines, but it is his playful, miniature-sized, often suggestive ceramic sculptures that have defined his career.

Ron Nagle is known as one the founders of the California Clay Movement and his practice has recently gained wider international recognition. His body of work was featured in the main exhibition at the 55th Venice Biennale, curated by Massimiliano Gioni and his work is included in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

In collaboration with Nagle, Petalas is exhibiting many of the works from his collection, alongside pieces loaned directly from the artist for Midnight Stroll. For the duration of the exhibition, The Perimeter will have special opening hours for the public, allowing unprecedented access to this personal space. Visitors will be able to browse the exhibition areas, library and offices that make up the two floors of the thoughtfully designed space and experience the work within the intimate context that one would have in a private home.

Ron Nagle said: "Alex Petalas and I have chosen works from our private collections to exhibit alongside one another in this fabulous space. This will be my first survey show in London and my only collaboration with a private collector’s museum. It is also a new way of involving the collector, the museum, the artist, and the public. The work spans from 1982 to the present and will include drawings and a diverse sampling of approaches in scale and style. Featured are some extremely rare works that have not been seen for 20 years or more, if ever. Some of my favorite Stillscapes, Hairdowares, Bronzes, and a rare collaboration between Ken Price and myself will be presented. Midnight Stroll explores my attraction to the mysterious, the dark side, and melancholy.”

Ron Nagle was born in San Francisco in 1939. He began working with ceramics during the 1950s as a high school student. In 1961 he apprenticed to Peter Voulkos at the University of California, Berkeley, and later exhibited his work alongside Voulkos, Ken Price, and other innovative West Coast artists working in clay. His work is inspired by such artists as Giorgio Morandi, Phillip Guston, and George Herriman, and by such varied forms as Japanese Momoyama ceramics and Hawaiian funerary monuments.

Ron Nagle’s first one-person exhibition took place in 1968, and since then he has had one-person exhibitions at numerous museums, including the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, the San Diego Museum of Art, and the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen in Rotterdam. In 2013 his work was included in the exhibition The Encyclopedic Palace at the 55th Venice Biennale. His recent exhibitions include Getting to No at Matthew Marks Gallery NYC and Euphoric Recall at Fridericianum Kassel and his upcoming shows include Secession, Vienna, Fall 2019, Berkley Art Museum and ICA Boston in 2020.

Nagle is also a musician, and a deluxe edition of his acclaimed 1970 album Bad Rice was released on Omnivore Recordings in 2015. He lives and works in San Francisco.

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