Jacob Kassay - Contemporary Art Day Sale New York Friday, May 17, 2013 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    The present lot, Untitled, 2008, is from Kassay’s now well-known body of work, commonly referred to as silver paintings. While their visual splendor is undoubtedly majestic, the means by which the shimmering surfaces are achieved is a quite simple and basic process. The raw canvas is stretched and then cloaked in a few layers of gesso. The paintings are then electroplated in silver, which produces the mirrored and foggy effect on the surface. Some of the surfaces become hyper reflective, revealing the silhouettes of the viewers who stand before them; however, few show the vigorous brushworks applied in the early stages of being simply doused in white gesso.

    Untitled, 2008, reveals bands of brushstrokes that stretch across the horizontal length of the canvas. They zigzag across the plane in harmonious rhythms. The edges of the canvas, however, reveal burnt edges as a result of the raw silver being oxidized. This unplanned outcome serves as a framing device to the pool of silver at its center. The bands of once white pigment are contained within the confines of the canvas with shimmering majesty. The lush and luxurious transformation of basic pigment into an elegant and regal medium highlights the very capacities and unlimited possibilities of painting in its most basic form. The present lot is a unique and unusual example from this series, capturing both the ghostly reflectivity of the silver paintings, but also unabashedly revealing the process by which they are achieved.



acrylic and silver deposit on canvas
48 x 36 in. (121.9 x 91.4 cm.)
Signed and dated "Kassay 08" on the reverse.

$100,000 - 150,000 

Sold for $233,000

Contact Specialist
Amanda Stoffel
Head of Sale
+1 212 940 1261

Contemporary Art Day Sale

New York 17 May 2013 10am