Barkley L. Hendricks

In the Paint

Jack Shainman Gallery
513 W 20th Street
Open by appointment
New York
May 14th 2020 — Jul 9th 2020


The late Barkley L. Hendricks may be best known for his magnetic portraits of Black Americans. Early in his career, however, the artist extensively experimented with the use of basketball imagery as a formal device in the context of minimalist painting.

"In the Paint" presents a selection of work that demonstrates Hendricks' engagement with basketball-derived visual elements in his paintings from around the late 1960s; the show also includes examples of photographic prints made decades later that looks at the sport through a pop-cultural lens.

From Jack Shainman:

Created in the late 1960s and early 1970s between his years as a student at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and Yale University, the paintings are a formative study of minimalism; an investigation of color, line, and geometry based in the shapes of basketball, inspired by Hendricks’ own love of the sport and its presence in his community.
. . . .
These early works both challenge and complement his celebrated position as a figurative painter and underscore the complexity and breadth of his singular career.

Barkley L. Hendricks, Untitled, 1971. Oil and acrylic on canvas, 62 1/2 x 96 x 1 5/8 inches.