John Bowman: Open City

John Bowman

January 9 - February 15, 2014

Winston Wächter Fine Art, New York is pleased to announce an exhibition of new work from painter John Bowman. Bowman’s latest oil paintings are a series of layered cityscapes that use visual fragments from real and remembered places in Albania, Turkey, Egypt and Eastern Europe. Each composite city represents an imagined hybrid– a place transformed by time and memory in which familiar buildings and landmarks are repeated, rearranged, eroded, or eradicated.

The frantic, layered structures of Bowman’s Open City embody the rapid growth that many cities in the region are currently experiencing. These places, in the midst of an historic transition, are evolving from rural to urban landscapes in an attempt to accommodate a rising, changing population. The unexpected juxtapositions, radical interruptions and extreme proportions of Bowman’s works suggest the movement of cities eagerly building upon themselves, erasing their past as they charge into the future.

Bowman’s cities seem to organically spread out across each canvas, multiplying and expanding from within. His works capture the shifting perceptions and overlapping perspectives that time and memory create in cities that are constantly changing. These “no places in particular” convey the uncertainty and fragility of location. Ancient foundations are being transformed in an unending cycle of construction and destruction, and one can never be sure of exactly where one is.

The ordered and chaotic patterns found in Bowman’s urban landscapes are reminiscent of Byzantine mosaics, Islamic tile work, the modernist grid and mathematical tessellation. Each work presents the viewer with an urban maze, streets converging and separating in rapid succession as the eye tries to trace a route across the city. They echo both the elaborate, fictive prisons of Piranesi, and Mondrian’s abstract geometric compositions.

John Bowman works in a variety of mediums including painting, drawing and sculpture. He recently participated in “Service to Public Areas,” a collaborative public art project in Shkodra, Albania. He has shown internationally and is represented in many private and museum collections. Bowman is currently a Professor of Art at the Pennsylvania State University.

Please join us for an opening reception with the artist on Thursday, January 9th, 2014 from 6 to 8 pm.  For further information please contact Amanda Snyder at 212 255 2718.