James Brinsfield - Retrospective

June 23 – September 29, 2018

Conversation at our June 21 private opening.  L to R are partial views of "The Most Important Thing That Doesn't Matter" and "Tomlin's Forest".

Jim discusses his ideas and process with local artists in front of "Good Citizenship", 2008.

Visitors view "Dust Off", 2011, at the Brinsfield opening of the retrospective.

Jim discusses "Inhalt", a painting from 1998.

Committed to abstract painting since the 1970s, Brinsfield is a respected and influential painter whose works are in numerous public and private collections including the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art in Overland Park, KS, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art both in Kansas City, MO. His career includes 19 one-person shows in Chicago, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles and Kansas City.

Currently his paintings are on view in two major exhibitions: “Unexpected Encounters” at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and “Anxious Abstraction” at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art.

Brinsfield has been a major presence in Kansas City’s thriving contemporary art scene for decades, through his teaching at the Kansas City Art Institute and his singular studio explorations in the “basic sensuality of paint and painting.” He continues “looking for a visual metaphorical code that can be applied to conveying content.” (“An Interview with James Brinsfield,” David Cateforis, chair, history of art department, University of Kansas, 2011)

Brinsfield and Joseph Nease met in Kansas City, MO, where Brinsfield had three solo shows at Nease’s previous gallery which opened in 1998.  This twenty-year retrospective highlights different periods within the larger body of Brinsfield’s work, giving viewers insight into the progression of the artist’s ideas and process for creating work, as well as documenting the twenty-year association between artist and gallery owner.

To the Duluth community and surrounding region, this exhibition provides a unique experience to see a continuum of work of an established abstract painter who has been an important voice within contemporary art. For visitors who are familiar with Brinsfield’s work, the exhibition also provides an opportunity to experience his past work, which remains remarkably fresh and compelling to today’s eye, in a different context alongside more recent paintings.

Thirteen major works and six additional works are on view from the period 1994 through 2017.  Here we present a selection of images from the 2008 to 2013 period to whet your appetite - soon we will have additional images and selected installation views on this page.  Writing by James Martin for a catalog essay of the exhibition is complete.

(Posted May 29, 2018)

See Mr. Brinsfield's Artist page for more information on his current work and biography.  Also see the March 21, 2018 News page regarding his participation in Anxious Abstraction at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art through early July.  A video of his artist talk is Here.

And for a couple of interesting exhibition catalogs related to Brinsfield's inclusion in the 1996 and 1998 Perspective: Kansas City exhibitions that relate to some of his 1990s paintings in this retrospective, see the following catalogs (each of which also included James Woodfill):
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