Nicolas Party - New Now New York Wednesday, September 30, 2020 | Phillips

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  • Provenance

    Galerie Gregor Staiger, Zurich
    Acquired from the above by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    Upending conventional visual notions of representation, space, and time, Nicolas Party’s Landscape, 2013, epitomizes the Swiss artist’s re-invention of the classical genre of landscape painting that has launched him to international acclaim in recent years. Classically trained as a painter, Party has grounded nearly his entire oeuvre in rendering canonical motifs of still life, portraiture, and landscape. A prime exemplar of one of the artist’s most iconic subject matters, Landscape presents the viewer with a vivid, dreamlike vista encompassing flat, graphic trees and shrubs that are defined as rich blocks of blues, scarlets, and neons beyond a tangerine-colored clearing in the foreground.

    Though working over a century later than his Impressionist ancestors, Party similarly utilizes the orthodox painterly subject of landscape as a device to cleverly explore contemporary conceptual themes; while Claude Monet and Paul Cézanne experimented with the modernist flatness of the picture plane and forms abstracted from nature, Landscape studies the artificial, computerized essence of the post-internet world. While the work refers to the traditional history of landscapes, it simultaneously evokes ghostly, hollow renderings of 3D models, a conceptual exploration that can be credited to artist’s 10 years spent working as a 3D animator and his interest in computer art. Ironically, Party creates his vacant futuristic forms in pastel, a technique that was prevalent at the turn of the 18th century. While computer animation is a modern, technological endeavor, painting with pastel is an intimate, physical practice generally applied by finger; according to Party, it allows him to “establish a real relationship with [his] work” (Nicolas Party, quoted in “Interview: Nicolas Party,” Conceptual Fine Arts, September 16, 2015, online). Rendering computer-generated aesthetics in a time-proven medium, Landscape mystifyingly pays simultaneous homage to art-making modes of the past and to the technology of the future.

  • Artist Biography

    Nicolas Party

    Nicolas Party (b. 1980) is a Swiss visual artist living and working in New York City and Brussels.
    He received his BFA from the Lausanne School of Art in 2004 and his MFA from the Glasgow
    School of Art, in Glasgow, Scotland in 2009. Party’s works on paper and canvas are most often done
    in colorful soft pastel, the most common subject matter being fantastical still life and portraits.


    Recent solo exhibitions include Karma, New York (2021–22, 2017); Le Consortium,
    Dijon, France (2021); Kunsthalle Marcel Duchamp, Cully, Switzerland (2021); MASI
    Lugano, Switzerland (2021); Hauser & Wirth, Los Angeles (2020); Xavier Hufkens,
    Brussels (2019); Modern Institute, Glasgow (2019); M Woods Museum, Beijing
    (2018); Magritte Museum, Brussels (2018); Kaufmann Repetto, Milan (2018);
    Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2016); and Dallas Museum of Art (2016). Party’s
    work is represented in the collections of the David Roberts Art Foundation, London;
    Migros Museum, Zurich; Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany; and the Sifang Art
    Museum, Nanjing, China.

    View More Works


Untitled (Landscape)

signed and dated "Nicholas Party 2013" on the reverse
watercolor on paper
30 1/8 x 22 1/4 in. (76.5 x 56.5 cm)
Executed in 2013.

$60,000 - 80,000 

Sold for $150,000

Contact Specialist

Sam Mansour
Associate Specialist, Head of New Now Sale
New York
+1 212 940 1219

New Now

New York Auction 30 September 2020