Spanning two floors of LGDR’s landmark Beaux-Arts-style townhouse, and inaugurating the gallery’s presence at 19 East 64th Street, Rear View (2023) presented a transhistorical selection of over sixty paintings, sculptures, works on paper, and photographs that explore representations of the human figure as seen from behind—an enduring, wide-ranging paradigm that has exerted potent influence upon modern and contemporary artists. In addition to rare twentieth-century masterworks by Félix Vallotton, Edgar Degas, René Magritte, Francis Bacon, Egon Schiele, Paul Cadmus, Aristide Maillol, and others, Rear View brought together seminal works by a diverse group of living artists spanning generations.
Long before the term Rückenfigur was popularized in the nineteenth century by Caspar David Friedrich, painters and sculptors from as far back as antiquity deployed the human figure seen from behind as a conceptual and formal device. Many contemporary artists have engaged this framework, deliberately harnessing its critical potential. Rear View provided a lens onto this genre as it pertains to artists’ desires to capture a range of human states and emotions—contemplation, longing, voyeurism, refusal, fetishism, and defiance—while drawing attention to the act of looking itself and to the viewer’s role in constructing meaning and identity.
Full Frontal, a pendant presentation to Rear View exhibited on the gallery’s second floor, explored the opposite art historical trope—frontal nudity. As the idiom of the title suggests, debates around moral propriety and censorship in art and popular culture often ascribe a confrontational value to front-facing nudes. While the naked body has always been present in visual culture, shifting social values have influenced representational approaches to the subject. Featured in Full Frontal were works by Miriam Cahn, Jenna Gribbon, and Barkley L. Hendricks, among others.
- ARTnewsOctober 16, 2023
- Art & ObjectMay 10, 2023
- ObserverMay 5, 2023
- AnOtherMay 2, 2023
- Le Quotidien de l'ArtApril 25, 2023
- CulturedApril 24, 2023
- The New York SunApril 21, 2023
- The New York TimesApril 20, 2023
- The Wall Street JournalApril 16, 2023
- Vogue MagazineApril 10, 2023