Stories From The Press

Martin Puryear: Lookout

By Rhea Fontaine

Martin Puryear’s LookoutStorm King’s newest site-specific commission—is a structure created from layers of red clay bricks laid using thin-shell masonry techniques. Rather than straight lines and vertical walls, however, the work curves inward and upward, opening to allow entry from one side while producing a swelling form on the opposite end. The twenty-foot-tall sculpture is shaped by a series of nine segments: at the open end, the first of these segments emerges visually and structurally as an arch, set perpendicular to the ground plane. Each successive segment is set against its neighbor at an increasingly acute angle, sweeping upward until the bricks of the final segment are laid in the form of a dome at the summit of the artwork.

Lookout marks the artist’s first use brick as a material, recognizing brickmaking as a once-primary industry in the Hudson Valley and referencing the vernacular structures that dot the local landscape. The work emerges from Puryear’s exploration of traditional masonry forms, including the daring techniques of Nubian vault-building without formwork that the artist witnessed in Mali; classical Roman arches and domes; the curved and tapered forms of bottle kilns at the ceramics factories of Stoke-on-Trent, in England; and the curved entablatures of the Squadron A Armory on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, which seem to defy gravity. To achieve this ambitious and unconventional use of the material, Puryear worked closely with several trusted collaborators, including structural engineers, architects specializing in Guastavino vaults, kiln-builders, and expert brick- and stonemasons.

Inside, Puryear uses the work’s form and setting to encourage a heightened sense of presence. Facing southwest, the masonry arch frames a sweeping view of Storm King’s landscape, with the contours of Schunnemunk Mountain in the far distance. The brick surface is punctuated by a constellation of ninety circular openings created by tubes of fiberglass-reinforced concrete in varying sizes. The tubes, or oculi, act as apertures, creating pinhole vignettes of the surrounding trees and sky. The “sweet spot,” indicated by the paving pattern, enables visitors to see out of all of the oculi at once.

Puryear describes the title of the work, Lookout, as simultaneously “a physical place, an invitation to observe and engage with the natural world, and a warning.”


Storm King Art Center

1 Museum Road
New Windsor, NY 12553

In The Gallery: Monumental Form: Torkwase Dyson and Martin Puryear

By Rhea Fontaine

Monumental Form features work by Torkwase Dyson and Martin Puryear, two artists known for large scale abstract sculpture and installation.

Torkwase Dyson describes herself as a painter working across multiple mediums to explore the continuity between ecology, infrastructure, and architecture. Dyson’s abstract works are visual and material systems used to construct fusions of surface tension, movement, scale, real and finite space. With an emphasis on the ways black and brown bodies perceive and negotiate space as information. Dyson looks to spatial liberation strategies from historical and contemporary perspectives, seeking to uncover new understandings of the potential for more livable geographies.

Martin Puryear employs wood, mesh, stone and metal to create organic forms rich with psychological, cultural, and historical references that resist identification. His objects and public installations are a marriage of minimalist logic with traditional ways of making. “I think there are a number of levels at which my work can be dealt with and appreciated,” he has said. “It gives me pleasure to feel there’s a level that doesn’t require knowledge of or immersion in the aesthetic of a given time or place.” Puryear represented the United States at the Bienal de São Paulo in 1989, where his exhibition won the Grand Prize.


In The Gallery: Markers of Time: Ross Bleckner, Woody De Othello, Chris Johanson and Martin Puryear.

By Rhea Fontaine

Markers of Time includes works by Ross Bleckner, Woody De Othello, Chris Johanson and Martin Puryear.

Ross Bleckner’s etchings: Early Every Morning, Early Every Evening, Eclipse, Shadow, Spinning and Winter are all observations and meditations on shifting shadows and light, mapping changes in nature.

Woody De Othello’s interior scenes playfully collapse into themselves through layers of bright color and domestic form. Clocks, light switches, lamps and hourglasses point to the passing of time and the reverie of both the Surrealists and California Funk artists.

Shoulders State 1 and State 2 are characteristic of Martin Puryear’s etchings. He often creates editions in stages, keeping his original plates to return to later. His sculpting process is often reductive, and with the etchings the removal of copper with acid becomes additive, pushing the image further into new space.

Chris Johanson’s work grapples with the energetic immediacy of the present, the hope of the future, and the expansiveness of forever. Often using text, his free-flowing messages cut through time and place and leave us to consider our human experience.

Paulson Fontaine Press has joined the ADAA

By Rhea Fontaine

The Art Dealers Association of America (ADAA) today announced the addition of 13 new members from across the country: Nicelle Beauchene Gallery (New York), Canada Gallery (New York), Catharine Clark Gallery (San Francisco), Anat Ebgi Gallery (Los Angeles), Eric Firestone Gallery (New York), Gitterman Gallery (New York), Mignoni (New York), Ortuzar Projects (New York), Parker Gallery (Los Angeles), Paulson Fontaine Press (Berkeley), Perrotin (New York), RYAN LEE Gallery (New York), and Skoto Gallery (New York). With these additions, the Association now surpasses 200 members, furthering its reputation as the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for fine art dealers and galleries. Membership in the ADAA attests to a gallery or dealer’s achievements in artistic connoisseurship, intellectual rigor, and professional distinction. Offering crucial services to member galleries over the last 60 years, the ADAA continues its dedication to providing members with technical, legal, and business resources, as well as guidance regarding the ever-evolving nature of the art market.

“This milestone is an exciting moment in the history of the ADAA,” said Executive Director, Maureen Bray. “We continue to strengthen the support for our members, helping them navigate the challenges of the current market. ADAA offers a unique community that members can look to for encouragement and solidarity across all aspects of their business practices.”

The Association’s 13 new members represent a wide range of mediums, specializations, and curatorial approaches. To guarantee that new members share the ADAA’s commitment to industry best practices and advancement, candidates undergo a year- long application process that begins with a nomination by an existing ADAA member and includes a thorough vetting procedure. The membership votes on the slate of new candidates, before receiving the Board’s final approval. All new members must have been in business in the United States for at least five years, demonstrate a record of accomplishment, and have made significant contributions to the art community through activities such as organizing exhibitions, generating scholarly publications, and actively engaging with museums.

“This new class of ADAA members represents the dynamic spirit of contemporary American galleries. The wide variety of programming approaches, artist representation, and exhibition styles shown by our Class of 2023 demonstrates the innovation within the industry that our organization seeks to champion,” said Robert Grosman, ADAA Membership Committee Chair.

“The rigorous peer review process of being admitted to the organization ensures a high level of connoisseurship, engagement, and diligence that all members bring to their trade,” says Anthony Meier, ADAA President. “This stellar cohort of new members, who have already helped shape the landscape of the art market, will add to the vibrancy of the organization as a whole.”

Full Press Release