Gaylen Gerber in conversation with Stephen Prina

Please join us for a special exhibition preview of focus: Gaylen Gerber with Stephen Prina, the latest installment in the museum’s on-going series of special exhibits of new work by leading contemporary artists. Since the late 1980s, Gaylen Gerber has expanded the formal and conceptual possibilities of gray monochrome painting as a means of engaging a rigorous, expansive study of art and perception. Although his paintings began as a series of regular 38×38″ canvases, Gerber’s recent, monumental works assume the qualities of architecture. Inserted seamlessly into the spaces of existing walls, windows, or doorways, his large-scale paintings on canvas simultaneously dominate and disappear; always, these site-specific installations challenge the spatial and temporal relationships between audience, author, and art object. Gerber’s exhaustive exploration of the gray monochrome has led most recently to a series of works in which the paintings themselves become deceptively simple backdrops for other works of art. In a gesture that is at once generous and self-effacing, Gerber co-opts other artists as subversive, willing, collaborators in the making of exhibitions. For this FOCUS project at the Art Institute of Chicago, Gerber has invited the distinguished, California-based conceptual artist Stephen Prina to provide a text, a detail of an earlier work by Prina from 1991, as both the reason for, and as a foil to, Gerber’s own painting. Gerber, together with Prina, stages an “interventionist” project in one of the museum’s most iconic, modern architectural spaces: Gallery 135, a two-story space surrounding the 1962 curved, freestanding concrete stairwell in the Morton Wing. Gaylen Gerber is Associate Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1987. His work is represented by Galerie Susanna Kulli, St. Gallen Switzerland. Stephen Prina is Acting Chair, Graduate Studies, Fine Art, Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, California, where he has been a member of the faculty since 1980. His work is represented by Galerie Gisela Capitain, Cologne; Margo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles; and Friedrich Petzel Gallery, New York.

The Art Institute of Chicago
Members – $35

05:30PM – 06:30PM – Reception
The Woman’s Board Room

06:30PM – 07:30PM – Lecture
The Woman’s Board Room