Winter of Discontent

303 Gallery
555 W 21st Street
Appointments encouraged
New York
Chelsea
Feb 6th 2021 — Apr 1st 2021

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Presented by 303 Gallery, "Winter of Discontent" gathers the work of 21 artists with an eye to the highly topical theme of environmental, political, and economic unrest. The exhibition takes its title from the opening lines of Shakespeare's Richard III: "Now is the winter of our discontent / Made glorious summer by this sun of York." With this quote as its starting point, the show's variety of work (including painting, photography, sculpture, and installation) is inflected with a spirit of resilience—the glimmer of hope on the horizon.

Larry Johnson's Untitled (A Quiet Life) (1990) offers another soliloquy, this time in the form of a photograph. Its text—a reflective dedication to a twin—is presented on a scroll set against a snowy backdrop: a surreal imagining of a message. Meanwhile, Alicja Kwade's Unbestimmter Tausch (indefinite exchange) (2014) places two spindly branches side by side, each limb tilting toward and seemingly mirroring the other. But, as a closer look reveals, it is an imperfect doubling.

Similar themes of duality manifest in Mary Heilmann's Windansea (2020) [pictured]. The layering of foamy white paint over smooth teal gives shape to a shoreline— a border that only gains definition through the disparate elements of land and sea. The idea of differentiation being the force that drives existence is a theme that runs through "Winter of Discontent." It harkens back to the opening lines of the play, signaling the edge of hope during a moment of despair—while accounting for a period of transition, both seasonal and historic.

Mary Heilmann, Windansea, 2020. Acrylic on wood panel, 24 x 96 x 3 inches.

  • Through
    Jun 6th

    A traveling exhibition of 69 oil paintings, watercolors and works on paper aims to chart Milton Avery’s trajectory and contextualize his work for a new generation.

  • Through
    May 29th

    Inspired by fractals, Renee Cox’s deity-like collages of Black figures constitute an Afrofuturist creation myth.

  • Through
    Jun 6th

    An economical survey of Jonas Mekas, “The Camera Was Always Running” serves as a touching introduction to the Lithuanian filmmaker and champion of avant-garde cinema.

  • Through
    May 28th

    The work in Valentina Vaccarella’s “Bless this Life” rests on a simple irony: monogrammed, embroidered French bridal linens pulled taut across stretcher bars and besmirched by rough images of modern madams.

  • Through
    Jun 6th

    Daniel Lie’s “Unnamed Entities” at the New Museum challenges the antiseptic aim of curation and conservation by imagining a different kind of organic art that needs to be nurtured rather than preserved.

  • Ongoing

    Dia’s recent acquisition of works by Charles Gaines forms the basis of this survey, which includes the artist’s first forays into mathematics-based grid drawings and other early experiments in medium and form.

  • Ongoing

    Day’s End, an elegiac memorial to and stubborn ghost of eras bygone, will also serve as silent witness to the inevitable changes to come.

  • Through
    Jan 2nd 2023

    The sonic encounters provoked by Camille Norment’s elaborate acoustic artworks serve as agents for social consciousness.

  • Through
    May 28th

    The words masterful and mastery assert themselves the instant one encounters the works in “My Body,” both for Nancy Grossman’s command of a wide range of skills and her active state of dominance, identity and selfhood.