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Almine Rech

Salon de Peinture

Apr 29 — Jun 5, 2021 | New York, Upper East Side

For the safety of our visitors and staff, masks must be worn by all visitors upon entrance and hand sanitizer will be provided at the door and throughout the gallery. Inquire about the exhibition: The gallery is open from 11 am until 5 pm.

Almine Rech’s own Salon de Peinture walks away from that mundane longing for spectacularity and revisits the idea of Salon. By narrowing down again the focus to painting, the gallery salon emulates the vitality of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century French Salons (the Salon des Refusés, des Indépendants, d’Automne and so forth). It should be noted that a Salon is not a group show per se: it is not curated and does not historicize the now in the fashion characteristic of contemporary art museums and curators. As such, it is more of an innocent conversation with which an array of living artists engage. Painters based in France, the United States, Ireland, Britain, Germany, and China are part of the discussion Almine Rech has initiated. Salon de Peinture moreover instigates yet another conversation: a dialogue with painting of the past.

The gallery, located at 39 East 78th Street, inscribes the Salon into the artistic topology of the Upper East Side: the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Frick Collection, the Guggenheim Museum, among others. There, numerous spaces and times mingle, becoming one in a way that is reminiscent of the spatio-temporal weave that French Salons and the Louvre formed more than a century ago. We shall now remember Rainer Maria Rilke, who, in October 1907, activated the chromatic axis that ties nineteenth-century France to sixteenth-century Venice, going back and forth between the Cézannes of the Salon d’Automne and the Tintorettos, Veroneses, and Titians of the Louvre. 

-  Théo de Luca, Author, Yale University

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