An opening reception will be held on Thursday October 8th from 6 – 8 pm. Titled Bushwick Landscape the exhibition gathers over thirty paintings from an ongoing series started in 2012.
French born painter and illustrator Jean-Philippe Delhomme has a very personal appreciation of New York filtered through his knowledge of history of photography, film and literature. The city has recently been the subject of the book New York by Jean Philippe Delhomme, Travel Book published by Louis Vuitton in 2013, including more than a hundred gouache paintings that represent both landmark and less chartered sites.
In this series of oil paintings, never exhibited before, Jean-Philippe Delhomme has turned his observation to a New York unfamiliar to most that has become his own territory: the industrial areas of Bushwick and Ridgewood. Based on direct observation of the view from the window or roof of his studio, the small paintings map the avenues lined with warehouses, scrap metal yards and workshops with the skyline of Manhattan in the distant background. This outdated practice of painting “en plein air” in one session is revived by the homogeneity of the format (9 x 12 inches or 8 x 10 inches) and the multiple iterations of the same vistas. The series becomes the visual diary of a lonely observer stationed in one point in the midst of the vast urban chaos, sensitive to the slightest effects of changing light and weather.
Diminutive abstract compositions of grays and beiges interpret the simple masses of the industrial buildings, unrepentant brushstrokes define the perspective of large avenues (Flushing or Metropolitan Avenue), accents of bright color signal parked dump trucks or concrete mixer. The absence of human activity does not suggest a wasteland deserted by its inhabitants but underlines the sense of wonderment of the observer able to slow down the uninterrupted cycles of activity of the industrial area into larger cycles of seasons.
Few painters today can paint without taking a critical stance about the state of the medium, but Jean-Philippe Delhomme achieves this freedom and pays tribute to painters he admires along the way.
Jean-Philippe Delhome has contributed to numerous magazines around the world since the late 80’s, produced award winning ad campaigns, notably for Barneys New York. He is a chronicler of culture, from his popular blog “the Unknown Hipster” to his weekly story in Zeit Magazin “Pariser Tagerbuch”. His work has been internationally exhibited and in New York he has held exhibitions at Partners and Spade, Danziger projects and Wright Gallery.