Urban Formalities: Paula DeLuccia and Liv Mette Larsen

Opening reception September 17

September 10 – October 11, 2014

Urban Formalities
Liv Mette Larsen and Paula De Luccia

Wednesday, September 10 – Saturday, October 11, 2014

William Holman Gallery is pleased to present Urban Formalities a joint exhibition of painting by Liv Mette Larsen and sculpture by Paula De Luccia.  Larsen and De Luccia engage in continuous acts of exploration, playfully reinventing objects culled from their everyday surroundings. Each begins with concrete and often practical objects, which, when reconfigured, become conduits to their individual abstractions. Though finding distinct resolutions, their works engage in a lively dialogue between reality and imagination.


The Norwegian-born, Bushwick-based, Larsen presents a series of egg-tempera paintings on linen. This delicate medium turns gritty, urban objects - the tiles of a factory floor, the façade of an old industrial building, metal from a junk yard- into fragile abstract forms, inverting reality with wit and affection. In the Neighborhood series, industrial buildings become like a children’s puzzle of blocks tightly arranged; with Scrap Metal, the shapes are so specific they appear like sounds reverberating in open space.  


Sound and rhythm also play a role in American artist Paula De Luccia’s sculptures, which from all vantage points are filled with mass and recess, tension and release. Constructed from physical detritus, old crates, pieces of plastic, chips of Murano glass, De Luccia configures whimsical, elaborate sculptures, often taking anthropomorphic forms, as with Mill Wild, in which the body of glass and painted wood stands on slender legs and feet.


As Erik Ulman, professor at Stanford University, writes, “…one obvious difference between your arts:  between open space and congestion, between flatness and three-dimensionality. Such difference is part of why the paintings and the sculptures go together so well, as complements; but it also may be as though the spaces among the assertively individual shapes within, say, Liv’s Scrap Metal paintings were to open out and include Paula’s sculptures as well, sparking a charge from the one to the other.”

Larsen was born in Oslo, Norway (1952). She attended the SHKS School for Arts and Crafts Oslo, Norway, followed by the Hochschule der Künste (UDK) in Berlin. She works primarily in egg tempera and mixes her own pigments and varnishes. Larsen has been the recipient of the Pollock-Krasner grant, the Vederlagsfondet from Norway and the BKH-stipend Norway (2013). Larsen shows at Galerie Kai Hilgemann in Berlin.


Born in Paterson, NJ (1953), Paula De Luccia studied at Ridgewood School of Art in Ridgewood, NJ from 1971-73 and the Kansas City Art Institute from 1973-74. She was invited to the Triangle Artist Workshop in Barcelona, Spain and was a participant at the inaugural Art/Omi Workshop held in Omi, New York. De Luccia works as a painter and sculpture in Manhattan and upstate New York.


Please join us for the opening reception of Urban Formalities on Wednesday, September 17 from 6-8PM.  Urban Formalities is on view through Saturday, October 11, 2014.