P R E S S   R E L E A S E

 

BLT Gallery Presents

Herb Brown
Painting & Video Works from the 1960s
January 28 – April 1, 2010

 

NEW YORK, NY - Herb Brown has never colored between the lines. His over painted advertising signs and subway posters boldly challenged both the role of graphic imagery in consumer culture and the unacknowledged censorship imposed upon society and the art world in the 1960s. Brown refused to conform, even when major New York art gallery owner Leo Castelli rejected his work in 1965 deeming the content pornographic and inappropriate for a commercial gallery space. The following year, Brown was interviewed by the New York Times at a show of erotic art at the Sidney Janis Gallery. Though the authorities visited the show, the work was less confronting and, therefore, tolerated. Brown called it "a vast deception, fantastically watered down." He continued to paint uninhibitedly, producing a body of work that artist Budd Hopkins described years later as "so blatant and ferocious that (it) may give pause to D.H. Lawrence or to that matter to Henry Miller."

Brown is far from a newcomer to the art world. Yet the obscenity laws of the 1960s, along with a massive studio fire that destroyed over 900 works of art in 1966, have kept his truly historical works hidden from the public eye.

BLT gallery is proud to start off their second season presenting the paintings and video works by New York artist Herb Brown (b. 1923). A prized student of Max Beckmann, teaming a trained de Kooning stroke with a wit usually reserved for collage works, Brown's work is refreshingly intelligent. With his exploration of consumerism and hypocritical societal values, bold use of color, and fondness for the comic, Herb Brown is a true 1960's pop art Icon.

A selection of Brown's over painted advertisements, along with a series of seminal video paintings, will be on display at the BLT Gallery from January 28, 2010 to April 1, 2010. There will be an opening reception for the artist on Wednesday, January 27, 2010, from 6 - 8 PM.