Bruce Conner

DECK Drawings

Paula Cooper Gallery
Jun 1st 2020 — Jun 28th 2020

Made using ink and paper, Bruce Conner's "DECK" drawings ushered in the artist's lifelong fascination with inkblots as a medium. The simple process involved in creating inkblot-based imagery became a wellspring of experimentation.

This show brings all of the "DECK" drawings together for the first time.

From Paula Cooper Gallery:

Created in the summer of 1975, Conner’s DECK drawings are some of the artist’s very first works in the INKBLOT series—one of his most expansive bodies of works. Composed of tiny, intricate, filigree patterns on white paper, inkblots became Conner’s main artistic medium in the last decades of his life, during which he experimented with amplified scale. An intensely meticulous activity, his process began by carefully folding paper along parallel vertical lines. Placing drops of ink, one at a time, and then pressing the fold to create the mirror impression, Conner repeated the action hundreds of times for a single drawing. His exhaustive variations in this technique resulted in myriad permutations of density and form. Several of Conner’s DECK drawings introduce wispy, interconnected blots, while others are darkly inked and drawn with greater sharpness—like small, self-contained space invaders or hieroglyphics. The spectrum of complex patterns in these early DECK works illustrates Conner’s burgeoning experimentation and deft mastery of the medium.

Bruce Conner, TRIO 24-23-22, 1975. Ink, each card: 6 x 4 inches; frame: 13 1/4 x 21 1/4 inches.