Half Off

January 5 - February 4, 2018

Jim Lee

Press Release

Nicelle Beauchene Gallery is pleased to announce Half Off, its fourth exhibition with New York-based artist Jim Lee.

In his new body of work, Lee presents an extended formal exploration of the monochrome painting [1]. True to style, the artist brings equal measures admiration and irreverence to his take on the perennial Modernist form through a promiscuous use of materials, unpolished approach, and indiscriminate mixing of high and low.

Lee’s single color canvases invoke the monochrome yet he disrupts the supposed sanctity of the picture surface with his signature seams and staples and a motley mélange of paints including spray enamel, oil, Flashe, dry pigment and several varieties of industrial paint. In an untitled yellow piece — Lee’s cheeky take on a color field painting — the left half of the canvas is painted with a traditionally mixed yellow Flashe paint while the right side is tinted with traffic and zone marking paint.

Lee’s aversion to the refined or polished results in cobbled compositions that are part-painting and part-sculpture. His playfulness with materials is often both formal and practical — for example, the stapled lip around each canvas’s edge acts as a guide for stretching them. In other instances, rather than painting a line, Lee allows it to form where two swaths of canvas are stapled together. This dedication to confusing the viewer’s visual perception of the piece with its physical actuality is an enduring concern across the artist’s practice. Lee’s interest in what can be communicated with minimal visual information results in paintings that have more questions than answers.

Jim Lee (b. 1970, Berrien Springs, MI) received his MFA from the University of Delaware in 1996. He has shown internationally at Galerie VidalCuglietta, Brussels; Motus Fort, Tokyo; FDC Satellite, Brussels and Galerie Markus Winter, Berlin. Additionally he has been included in exhibitions at the Lamar Dodd School of Art at University of Georgia, Athens, GA; the Center for the Arts Gallery, Towson, MD; Ratio 3, San Francisco; LAND, Los Angeles; Islip Art Museum, NY; Galerie Ruth Leuchter, Dusseldorf; Galerie Lelong, New York; Andrae Kaufmann Gallery, Berlin; IMOCA, Indianapolis; White Flag Projects, St. Louis; Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Atlanta; Larry Becker Contemporary Art, Philadelphia and the Neuberger Museum of Art in Purchase, NY. Lee lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

[1] “Hey Jim thanks, yea i agree about those works you sent, in terms of the show...how about one of those fucked up monochromes?...anyhow, no pressure because we're pretty sure the big piece will be in the show, and hopefully u can fix the other one...”

“Ok, a monochrome it is. I have 2 monochromes in the works...not sure if they fit your criteria of “fucked up” -- but will try to finish them in the next day or so and send you some images.”

Beauchene, Nicelle and Jim Lee. “Re: Paintings for the show.” 1 October 2013. E-mail.