Images

Sea Wall, 1985 

3 canvases, 84 x 369 inches; sculptural elements: 5 boats, 5 houses, 4 step stones, 4 sea wall elements, 1 seahorse chair

Sea Wall, 1985 

Detail, left canvas

Sea Wall, 1985 

Detail, middle canvas

Sea Wall, 1985 

Detail, right canvas

Press Release

Locks Gallery is pleased to present the installation of Jennifer Bartlett's major work, Sea Wall. Exhibited in her fifteen-year traveling retrospective in 1985, Bartlett’s piece encompasses three canvases and over a dozen sculptural elements - from houses to boats to stepping stones - stretching over thirty-five feet in length. 

After the artist's renowned In The Garden series (1980-83), Bartlett worked on a commission for Volvo the following year which first began the incorporation of three-dimensional elements into her practice. Sea Wall remains an essential part of the New Image movement of the 1980s that heralded a return to subject and imagery in contemporary painting—a movement in which Jennifer Bartlett was a central figure.

In archival footage from the Walker Art Center’s 1985 survey of the artist, newly turned into a video experience of Sea Wall at Locks Gallery by Greenhouse Media, Bartlett muses on her then-recent inclusion of the multitude of various objects within her exhibition. The survey, beginning at Walker Art Center, traveled to four distinct locations between ‘85-86, including the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, MO, The Brooklyn Museum, NY, La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art, CA, and the Museum of Art, Carnegie Institute, PA.

In Sea Wall, the artist’s desire to make a place for her painting is paramount. The question of site is addressed by Jennifer Bartlett conceptually and abstractly, as the objects comprise a scene that further complicates the subject matter of the painting. Sea Wall tells a story and paints a portrait; a portrait of the artist as a landscape, of sorts — a composite of the built environment.

Find the installation online, or in Philadelphia by appointment only at Locks Gallery.

 

Jennifer Losch Bartlett (b. Long Beach, CA, 1941) received her B.A. from Mills College, CA, and her B.F.A. (1964) and M.F.A. (1965) from Yale University. Her works are in over one hundred museum collections. In 1985, the Walker Art Center organized a major retrospective of Bartlett's work, which included Rhapsody, works from the In The Garden series, from The Creek series and Sea Wall. The retrospective also traveled to the Brooklyn Museum in New York, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, and the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCASD) in La Jolla. In 2015, Bartlett was the focus of an exhibition and monograph entitled Epic Systems: Three Monumental Paintings at the Cleveland Museum of Art and Hospital at the Drawing Center, NY in 2016. Her recent retrospective History of the Universe, curated by Klaus Ottman traveled to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, PA and Parrish Art Museum, NY, with an accompanying catalog. Other solo exhibitions have taken place at the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, MA; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; The Brooklyn Museum, NY; The Tate Gallery, London, England; Baltimore Art Museum, MD; and The Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT.

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Text by Raphael Rubinstein 2015
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Publication
Jennifer Bartlett
May 4-June 9, 2001 2001
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Publication
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Text by Kay Larson 1998
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Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: In the Garden (1980-83)
Text by Gregory Volk 2014
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Publication
Jennifer Bartlett, Binary Images: Shaped Canvases and Plate Paintings
Text by Elizabeth Murray 2005
Jennifer Bartlett: Chaos Theory (1971-2013)
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: Chaos Theory (1971-2013)
Text by Ann Landi 2013
Jennifer Bartlett: From Rhapsody to Song
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: From Rhapsody to Song
Text by David Moos 2008
Jennifer Bartlett: History of the Universe (1970-2011)
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: History of the Universe (1970-2011)
Text by Klaus Ottmann 2014
Jennifer Bartlett: Painting the Language of Nature and Painting
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: Painting the Language of Nature and Painting
Text by Donald Kuspit 2006
Jennifer Bartlett
Steel Plate Paintings from the 1970s
Jennifer Bartlett
Point, Line, Square, Getting Somewhere 2017
Jennifer Bartlett's Enameled Steel Plates
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett's Enameled Steel Plates
Text by Marie-Claire Groeninck 2012
Jennifer Bartlett: Early Plate Work
Publication
Jennifer Bartlett: Early Plate Work
Text by Brenda Richardson 2006
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