Jennifer Samet interviews artist June Leaf. An exhibition of Leaf's drawings, Thought is Infinite, opens at the Whitney Museum of American Art, on April 27, 2016.
Leaf remarks: "When a piece is ready, it says, 'Okay. It’s not as good as you thought, but just go.' I don’t know what it is. That would be a really good thing to try to figure out: what releases the artist. What is that click that says, 'We are through with you'? I think the secret is honesty. The image has to hit you back, for all of your gesticulating and fighting and stabbing and jabbing, being courageous or weak, or soft or hard. Something tells you when you’ve told the truth."
Pearlstein comments that "teaching was itself a great learning process. One of the artists I fell in love with while I was an art history student was Mondrian. I used the library at the Museum of Modern Art for my research on Picabia and Duchamp and when I needed a break I would go down to the galleries, and in those days they were empty so it was possible to stare at works without interruption. Mondrian was already the God of all layout artists, but as I really got to know his work, it began to vibrate, to do very strange things. It moves, the elements move if you give the work time. All sorts of things happen with the optic nerves, I guess, so lines drift and move around. You blink your eyes and it’s all gone. I tried to teach on that basis. Everything I taught involved some of that lesson I learned from Mondrian, from his picture structure and how the picture structure drifts. The setups I produce in my studio are really theatre designs – maybe that’s what I should be exhibiting."
Carolina A. Miranda interviews art critic and Agnes Martin biographer Nancy Princenthal about the artist on the occasion of the upcoming Agnes Martin retropsective at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). The show will be on view from April 24 – September 11, 2016.
Princenthal comments: "I think — and this is subjective — that the nature of the work she did reflected a way to establish a sense of order in her visual world and her perceptual world and her emotional world. It was urgent to her to establish, one after another, to establish these experiences of transcendent calm."
Referring to his earlier still life paintings Lewis comments: "I’ve always thought of the tabletops as stage sets (but not in an obvious way) and now I think of the streets as stage sets too—a place where I enjoy observing daily life... I like to discover places to paint. I like to be stimulated by something that I have seen as a starting point for a work. It’s not practical to make the large graphite drawings/collages outdoors but I prefer the experience of being on site."
Jennifer Samet interviews painter Bill Scott whose exhibition Imagining Spring is on view at Hollis Taggart Gallery, New York through April 16, 2016.
Scott comments: "I think I paint bittersweet fictions. I don’t believe the imagery I paint exists. I am not so removed from the world that I think it is pleasant out there. I think it is close to awful. We are walking towards extinction. So, why wouldn’t I paint the Garden of Eden or something pleasurable? What am I going to gain, spiritually or emotionally, from painting something miserable? I would much rather live in a fantasy world. I want a kindness in the painting. I want there to be an emotional ease. Generally, I don’t feel that in life, so I want it to exist in the paintings."
Sheryl Oppenheim interviews painter Tess Bilhartz whose exhibition Purple Nights was recently on view at Arts + Leisure, New York.
Bilhartz remarks: Narrative is something that I’ve always been interested in. I read a lot of fiction and movies and dramas, but I never really found a way to make it a part of my work. One of the things that I really fell in love with about that project [collborative film project with Holly Veselka] was that it suddenly freed me up to bring in everything that I had ever been interested in and it throw it at one project. And I think this work [Purple Nights] really comes out of that. That collaborative project helped me to see a way forward as a painter."
Christopher Joy and Zachary Keeting visit the studio of painter Albert Kresch.
Kresch comments: "Light is maybe the second most important thing in a painting for me... space [is first] ... I studied very early with [Hofmann] I was 18 in 1942 and 43... Push and pull didn't interest me... I wanted to hurl the spectator off the surface [into] space."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.