Abstract artist Dan Walsh, known for his colorful geometric paintings, is currently presenting new works at the Paula Cooper Gallery in New York. Walsh hails from the minimalist tradition, however, the artist now considers himself to be a “maximalist” in the sense that the simple repetition and grid-like patterns of his work embrace the qualities of minimalism yet engage the viewer in a deeper psychological sense.
Layered brush strokes result in a fervent exploration of “painting’s possibilities.” There is no grand scheme: “[I] just [try] to stretch out the vocabulary and see what’s possible.” Even with latitude, Walsh takes a disciplined approach to the canvas, and rooted in each concentric circle or rectangular shape is a sense of concentration and unity.
In the vein of fourth century Chinese landscape painters that viewed the “empty space” of mountains and streams as a repository of ch’i, Walsh has “always regard[ed] the space in a painting as the soul of a painting.” In the moment the viewer traces the artist’s process and reflects upon the finished product, meaning is created not in the codified symbolism of the work but rather the individual experience of reading it with verve and malleability.
Dan Walsh was born in Philadelphia, PA in 1960 and graduated from the Philadelphia College of Art and Hunter College. He currently lives and works in New York City.