press release

Jason McCoy Gallery is pleased to present Black & White, an exhibition exploring the concept of stark, formal and emotive contrasts in painting, sculpture and photography.

Often abbreviated as B/W or B&W, black-and-white as a visual description is somewhat of a misnomer as it can entail various shades of white, black and gray. In photography, the early works for example often contained a tint of sepia and in painting, various artists have repeatedly argued that black and white should be viewed as hues in their own right (rather than just as light and the absence of light).

No matter how fine the nuances within the B&W delineation might be from case to case, the works in this exhibition prove that a restricted palette does not make for a lack of expressive or emotional range. The concentration on a black-and-white palette can be formal, as is the case in a Calder black mobile or Sugimoto´s photograph Colors of Shadow C1020, or gestural, demonstrated by works on paper by Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline, David Smith, and Mark Tobey for example. It can be employed as a meditation on light, such as in Robert Ryman´s Summary or Richard Pousette-Dart´s Hieroglyph White Gardenor its absence, as shown in Maxwell Hendler’s black monochrome Orfeo.

B&W can allude to the clarity of communication, such as black text on white ground, the notion of timeless elegance, nostalgia, serenity, sobriety, the extremity of emotion, the color of skin, good and evil, night and day, past and future, life and death. As a term it implies a broad concept, as the inspiration for a thematic group show, it functions as an umbrella for diversity.