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"Pat Steir: Color Wheel" (October 24, 2019 - September 7, 2020) Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

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The Hirshhorn continues its excellent run of exhibits utilizing the perimeters of their gallery spaces. 

Pat Steir: Color Wheel

"The Hirshhorn will host the largest painting installation to date by the acclaimed abstract painter Pat Steir. The exhibition is an expansive new suite of paintings by the artist, spanning the entire perimeter of the Museum’s second-floor inner-circle galleries, extending nearly four hundred linear feet. These immersive works will transform the Museum into a vibrant spectrum of color. The thirty large-scale paintings, when presented together as a group, will create an immense color wheel that shifts hues with each painting, with the pours on each canvas often appearing in the complementary hue of the monochrome background.

Over the past four decades, Steir has produced a commanding body of abstract paintings that draw on the artist’s distinctive method of combining meticulous brushwork with multiple layers of drips and pours, simultaneously carefully calibrated and apparently random. Drawing on motifs from Chinese ink painting and gestural abstraction, Steir’s paintings are formed by brushing and pouring multiple layers of paint, allowing gravity to guide the cascading forms. Her signature technique echoes the metaphysical ideas of harmony with nature expressed in Zen Buddhist and Daoist thought, even as it redefines the conventional flat picture plane to sculpt deep, transcendent space. At the Hirshhorn, this commission will activate the entire gallery as visitors walk around the space, exploring the wheel’s spectrums. Moreover, Steir’s paintings will create a dialogue with the Gordon Bunshaft-designed outdoor fountain and seasonal changes visible through the Museum’s windows.  Curated by Evelyn C. Hankins, Senior Curator."

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