Morgan Lehman Gallery is pleased to present 1200’, an exhibition of large-scale watercolors by Amy Park. This will be Park’s first solo exhibition with the gallery following her 2011 show in Morgan Lehman’s Project Space. A full color catalogue with an essay by Michelle Grabner will be published on the occasion of this exhibition.
Amy Park’s watercolor paintings utilize Modernist architecture as their point of departure. Grids are laboriously constructed through repetitive pencil marks and precise watercolor strokes, creating enormous, optically charged fields that mirror the order, layering, scale, and density of information present in the urban experience. Building on her previous work in which Park honed in on architectural detail and its rhythmic patterns and relationships, Park has now moved up and out from her street-level perspective to take on New York City as a whole.
Park’s densely packed and visually collaged cityscapes were inspired by a flight down the Hudson River just parallel to the island of Manhattan in her family’s 40-year-old single-engine Grumman. The altitude of flight (and the show’s namesake), 1,200 feet, allowed Park to take in the city from its vertical center, capturing the flight’s unique speed and elevation in hundreds of photos that would later collage into the inspiration for her watercolors. These panels herald the flight’s rapidly shifting perspective, with the shown slices of skyline not literally contiguous yet visually coherent. Cities themselves are vast physical collages in a constant state of flux: morphing with shifts in legislation, as architects reimagine and redesign them, and as their inhabitants move through the streets. Park’s watercolors layer, collage, and document this information of change, formally manifesting New York City’s relentless transformation.
Park received a BFA in 1999 and an MFA in 2003 from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and also studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Ox-Bow Summer Art School. Her work has been exhibited widely in the US, including Morgan Lehman Gallery, New York, NY; Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects, New York, NY; The Suburban, Oak Park, IL at Project Row House, Houston, TX; The Poor Farm Experiment, Manawa, WI; and Kopeikin Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. Her work is in the permanent collections of Fidelity Investments, The Cleveland Clinic, Deloitte and Touche USA, Microsoft Corporation, The College of DuPage, and Drawing Center’s Artist Archive at the Museum of Modern Art. The artist lives and works in Long Island City, NY.