David Mann. Sympathetic Strings

7 Jan 2016 – 6 Feb 2016

New York
New York, United States

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Margaret Thatcher Projects is pleased to present Sympathetic Strings, an exhibition of paintings by David Mann.


In his debut solo show at the gallery, Mann explores a series of paradoxes through a unique blend and treatment of mediums.

The artist draws inspiration from sympathetic strings for the title of his exhibition. These strings are found on certain musical instruments, such as a sitar, and lie just below the strings that are touched by the musician. The sympathetic strings are set off only by vibrations of the played strings, their sound discovered and concealed by the top layer.

For Mann, the relationship between the viewer and his paintings is one of intimacy and immensity. At first, the eye is drawn in to a distinctive source of inner light, where layers of acrylic, oil and translucent glazes are prudently positioned to achieve incandescence. Expanding outwards, the surface amplifies. Subtle gradients of color develop throughout the surface, punctuated with taut lines that stretch vertically or horizontally. Manipulated by the use of mineral spirits, a solvent that reacts with the layers to form bubbles, the works incorporate a dimension that is unrestrained. The dialogue formed between the mediums establishes the artist’s restraint and ability to relinquish control during creation.

Mann’s work captures a precise yet ambiguous moment. He says, “Something is just coming into being, or on the contrary, having its moment of existence eclipsed; something is simultaneously verging on the cusp of decay and part of a moment of becoming.”

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Exhibiting artists

David Mann


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