Release Date: August 12, 2015
17 Exemplary Series Created at Gemini G.E.L. by Major Artists on View at National Gallery of Art, Washington, October 4, 2015–February 7, 2016
Exhibition Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Renowned Print Workshop
Washington, DC—Some of the most important and influential artists of the past five decades have conceived and produced groundbreaking series—both print and sculptural—at Gemini G.E.L. (Graphic Editions Limited) since the renowned Los Angeles artists' workshop and publisher was founded in 1966. Coinciding with Gemini's 50th anniversary, The Serial Impulse at Gemini G.E.L., on view October 4, 2015, through February 7, 2016, at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, sheds light on this phenomenon.
The exhibition will showcase in their entirety, 17 innovative and exemplary serial projects (127 individual works) created by 17 artists working at Gemini G.E.L.: John Baldessari, Vija Celmins, Michael Heizer, David Hockney, Jasper Johns, Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Julie Mehretu, Bruce Nauman, Claes Oldenburg, Ken Price, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, Susan Rothenberg, Ed Ruscha, Richard Serra, and Frank Stella. All works in the exhibition are drawn from the Gemini G.E.L. Archive at the Gallery, which contains an example of nearly every edition ever published by Gemini.
"At Gemini G.E.L., prominent artists have produced print and sculptural series that are among the most important and complex of the past 50 years," said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art, Washington. "The Gallery is proud to be the home of the Gemini G.E.L. Archive, which—like all of our works on paper—is available for viewing in our study rooms by appointment."
Sidney B. Felsen, Gemini's cofounder and codirector commented, "Gemini G.E.L. is thrilled to celebrate our 50th anniversary with the National Gallery of Art. We were fortunate enough to begin our relationship in 1981, when the archive was established, and it has been one of the greatest decisions we have ever made. The Serial Impulse will be our fourth exhibition at the Gallery, and we are excited to showcase a cross-section of the distinct, collaborative, and serial works created in our workshop over the past 50 years."
Exhibition Organization and Support
The exhibition is organized by the National Gallery of Art, Washington. The exhibition is made possible by The Exhibition Circle of the National Gallery of Art.
About the Exhibition
At Gemini, artists are encouraged to do "projects in depth," as Felsen has described their efforts. From seminal early works by artists such as Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, and Stella, to more recent ones by Baldessari, Mehretu, Serra and others, the selection of serial projects on view reveals the wide range of artistic approaches to serial production from all decades of Gemini G.E.L.'s history.
The principles that unify series can vary widely—thematic, narrative, iconographic, formal, structural, modular, conceptual, or something else entirely. The sequence of works within a series is essential to the way the group is read and understood, and may be dictated by the artist, by an internal system or external logic, or may be open-ended and indeterminate. Echoing these variables, the exhibition will not have a traditional, exclusive entrance and exit; as a way of exploring the potential impact of alternate sequences, The Serial Impulse is structured so that it may be entered at either "end" of the suite of galleries it occupies.
An expansive web feature is planned for the exhibition. It will include more than 200 images of the series on exhibit and comparative illustrations, explanatory text for each series, behind-the-scenes photographs of the artists and printers at work at Gemini G.E.L., video of one of the works in the exhibition being restored, technical information, and more.
Established in 1966 by Sidney B. Felsen, Stanley Grinstein, and Kenneth Tyler, Gemini G.E.L. is an artists' workshop and publisher of limited edition prints and sculptures. Known for a willingness to embrace new technology and tackle complex projects, Gemini G.E.L. has attracted some of the most innovative artists of our time.
Gemini G.E.L. and the National Gallery of Art
The National Gallery of Art has been home to the Gemini G.E.L. Archive since 1981. The archive holds an example of nearly every edition ever published by Gemini G.E.L., select proof impressions, working material, and photographs and documents. The Gallery's holdings of Gemini works are a cornerstone of its contemporary print collection. An online catalogue raisonné, documenting the first 40 years of work at Gemini G.E.L. (1966–2005), includes more than 2,000 print and sculpture editions by important and influential artists of our time. The catalogue raisonné will continue to be periodically updated. For more information about the Archive, visit www.nga.gov/gemini/home.htm. To make an appointment to view any of these works, call (202) 842-6380 or (202) 842-6605, or e-mail [email protected]
Exhibition Curator and Related Activities
The exhibition is curated by Adam Greenhalgh, associate curator, National Gallery of Art.
Talking Shop with Sidney Felsen: 50 Years of Artists at Gemini G.E.L.
October 1, 2:00 p.m., West Building Lecture Hall
Sidney B. Felsen, cofounder and codirector, Gemini G.E.L.; and Lauren Schell Dickens, curatorial consultant, department of modern prints and drawings, National Gallery of Art
The Serial Impulse at Gemini G.E.L.
October 4, 2:00 p.m., East Building Auditorium
Adam Greenhalgh, associate curator, National Gallery of Art
Unabridged and Incomplete: Series and Sequences in Contemporary Art
January 24, 2:00 p.m., East Building Auditorium
Susan Tallman, adjunct associate professor of art history, theory, and criticism, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and editor-in-chief, Art in Print
The Serial Impulse at Gemini G.E.L.
October 9, 10, 12, 20, and 26, 2:00 p.m.; October 11, 1:00 p.m.
Diane Arkin (50 mins.), West Building Rotunda
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Exhibition Press Release
Checklist (PDF 267kb)
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