Happy 50th anniversay Pace! In celebration of its golden anniversary, The Pace Gallery is presenting a multi-venue retrospective of its history, tracing back to its roots in Boston and exhibiting many "key masterpieces" from the approximately 700 exhibitions it has organized and 350 catalogues it has published throughout the past five decades.
The gallery's 32 East 57th Street space focuses on "recreations of some of the gallery's most significant historical shows," including Pablo Picasso: The Avignon Paintings, 1981; The Sculpture of Picasso, 1982; Coenties Slip: Robert Indiana, Ellsworth Kelly, Agnes Martin, James Rosenquist, Jack Youngerman, 1993; De Kooning/Dubuffet: The Women, 1991; Bonnard/Rothko: Color and Light, 1997; Mondrian/Reinhardt: Influence and Affinity, 1997, and more. The gallery will also have on view rare archival items like "letters and telegrams between artists, vintage gallery announcements, and historical installation photography" (from the press release).
Pace's 534 West 25th Street location focuses on Pop art and Abstract Expressionism with highlights including Jasper Johns' Three Flags, 1958; Andy Warhol's Marilyn Diptych, 1962; assorted Claes Oldenburg sculptures including Giant BLT (Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich), 1963 and Bacon and Egg, 1965; and (my personal favorite) a trio of works by Robert Rauschenberg including Erased de Kooning Drawing, 1953, Untitled [glossy black painting], c. 1951, and Windward, 1963. Pace's new location at 510 West 25th Street has a terrific debut exhibition focusing on contemporary art today. Highlights from this venue include Chuck Close's portrait of Chinese artist Zhang Huan, Zhang Huan I, 2008 ; Maya Lin's intricate pattern of steel pins stuck directly onto a wall, Pin River - Hudson, 2009; Michal Rovner's Data Zone, Cultures Table #1, 2003; Zhang Xiaogang's Comrades, 2006; and Fred Wilson's Iago's Mirror, 2009.
My personal favorite of the retrospective shows takes place at Pace's 545 West 22nd Street space which is devoted to Minimal Art and the post-Modernist movements, featuring works by Larry Bell, John Chamberlain, Dan Flavin, David Hockney, Robert Irwin, Donald Judd, Sol LeWitt, Robert Mangold, Brice Marden, Bridget Riley, Lucas Samaras, Joel Shapiro, Kiki Smith, James Turrell, Richard Tuttle, (phew!) and more. So many highlights at this venue, but most notable are the room with two James Turrell computerized neon works and another room with two Dan Flavin light pieces; Lucas Samaras' massive Mirrored Room, 1966 (not seen in NYC since Samaras' Whitney retrospective in 1973!); and Sol LeWitt's Wall Drawing #741 which draftsmen started installing for this exhibit back in August and was "previously on view (for the first and last time) in LeWitt's 1994 exhibition at Pace."
A catalogue featuring more than 250 full-color illustrations has been produced for the celebratory exhibition. Also, a free iPhone app (available on iTunes) was specially designed for 50 Years at Pace "featuring audio clips of artists and art historians and a walking tour of public works in Manhattan." Pace Prints, Pace Primitive and Pace/MacGill also currently have special exhibitions on view to coincide with the anniversary retrospective.
50 Years at Pace is a must-see. It's a series of best-of collections conveniently packaged and (mostly) situated within walking distance from eachother. I will definitely revisit these wonderful exhibits before they close on October 23rd -- October 16th for the new 510 West 25th Street space. Here's to another 50 years, Pace! Learn more at thepacegallery.com.
Unfortunately, lots of security guards were at all the venues making sure pictures were not being taken. Below is a pic of Lucas Samaras' Mirrored Room, 1966 from The Pace Gallery website.