Joyce Pensato solo show at Petzel Gallery

Feb. 19, 2015

NEW YORK – Opening February 19th, Petzel Gallery, New York will be presenting new paintings and drawings by Joyce Pensato and primiring digital c-prints of collages in her Brooklyn studio.

Press Release:

February 19 – March 28, 2015
456 W 18th Street

Petzel Gallery is pleased to announce Castaway, a solo exhibition by New York based artist Joyce Pensato. This is her fourth solo exhibition with the gallery.

For this exhibition, Pensato will present a new series of paintings and drawings, as well as premiere digital c-prints of her studio taken by the artist and predominantly comprised of collages on her studio walls.

The paintings and drawings will reprise her cast of familiar cartoon and comic book characters, including Batman, Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, and Homer Simpson, among others. In the new paintings we see her continued exploration of sporadic leaps into color, especially gold and copper, which represent a departure from what has historically been a strictly black and white painting palette. Whereas colorful pastels have surfaced in Pensato’s charcoal drawings over the years, the introduction of color in her paintings is a more recent development and denotes an additional layer within, simultaneously erased and darkened by the profuse and continual saturation of the canvas.

The digital c-prints, exhibited for the very first time to the public, are of the artist’s Brooklyn studio walls, showing juxtapositions of collages that inform her practice and surround her daily working conditions. Historically, Pensato has imported these various collages and other ephemera – figurines and stuffed animals – into the gallery space to an assemblage effect. However on this occasion these objects will be left behind, allowing the photographs to occupy the same two-dimensional spaces of those of her paintings and drawings. Through these old and new mediums, Pensato continues her baleful transmutation of American cartoon culture – employing her fast, assured, and gestural hand to shed light on the arguable darkness lurking within our familiar Pop iconography.

Joyce Pensato was born in Brooklyn, New York, where she continues to live and work. Her touring solo show, I Killed Kenny, was first shown at the Santa Monica Museum of Art (2013) and then traveled to the Contemporary Art Museum of St Louis (2014). Recent group exhibitions include Empire State, curated by Alex Gartenfeld and Sir Norman Rosenthal, at the Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome (2013); Interior Visions: Selections from the Collection by Alex Katz at the Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville (2012); and A Painting Show at The Speed Museum of Art, Louisville (2011). Pensato’s work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York; SFMoMA, San Francisco; the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; the Dallas Museum of Art; St Louis Art Museum and the FRAC des Pays de la Loire. She has won numerous awards including the Robert de Niro, Sr. Prize (2013), the Award of Merit Medal for Painting, given by the American Academy of Arts and Letters (2012), the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award (1997) and the Guggenheim Fellowship (1996).

Petzel Gallery is located at 456 West 18th Street New York, NY 10011. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM. For press inquiries, please contact Andrew Black at, or call (212) 680-9467.

Click here for images and more information.