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Public Opening          Friday, May 3, 2024           6-8 PM

New York, NY – April 9, 2024 – 125 Newbury presents Lauren Quin: Logopanic, an exhibition of new paintings by the Los Angeles-based Quin. The show, which will take place at 125 Newbury’s location at 395 Broadway in Tribeca from May 3 until June 15 of 2024, will be the artist’s first solo exhibition in New York.

In Lauren Quin’s paintings, form occupies a fugue state. Quin builds her compositions methodically, layer by layer, only to scrape through them, carving channels that spiderweb across the picture. Her paintings are palimpsests; past and present mingle in a single surface, interrupting one another. Both sedimentary and archaeological, the works are as much excavated as painted. Constructed from an arsenal of recurring gestures and techniques, Quin often makes use of marks she refers to as “tubes,” together with skeins and filigrees of color that she monoprints directly onto a work’s surface.

“The ambition of Lauren’s work is astonishing to me,” says Arne Glimcher, founder of 125 Newbury. “When I walked into her studio for the first time, it was a blast of fresh air. The environment her paintings created was electric. I immediately felt that here was an artist ready to take on the world. I was instantly captivated.”

For Quin, the act of painting involves the risk of getting lost. To paint is to give up a fixed location – in space but also in language. The exhibition’s title suggests an anxiety or instability around words and images. From the Greek logos (meaning “word”) and penia (meaning “poverty, absence, or lack”), logopenia refers to a type of aphasia, a condition characterized by a progressive loss of the faculties of speech. In the colloquial sense, a logo is a visual and symbolic metonym – an image that stands for something else. “Logo panic” evokes a sense of unmooring from such systems of signification.

Quin orients her practice around an archive of drawings, prints, and carvings, which contain an ever-expanding collection of symbols. A hand, a spider, a vulture, a needle, a skull, the sun—for Quin, these symbols function in myriad ways. At times, they provide the starting point for a painting; at others, Quin prints the symbol onto the surface of an existing composition – or carves it directly into the painted surface – disrupting or inflecting its evolution. Often, she will transfer a symbol onto the verso of a canvas, where it remains hidden from the viewer, but available to her as she works. The drawings act as anchorages, providing fixed reference points as a composition unfolds, and linking one painting to the next. These drawings are always evolving and bleeding back into her larger repertoire, seeding new possibilities for paintings.

Shadows and traces of imagery ebb and flow across Quin’s canvases, caught in relentless currents of form, refusing solidification or coherence. Quin’s tubes are tools for abstraction, but they are also tunnels, pathways, furrows, or mouths. A swirl of paint is at once a sun and a cymbal – and also a symbol. Her paintings are constantly digesting her symbols, subsuming and transforming them wholesale, eroding contours and allowing form to diffuse in suspended animation. “I think of the symbols as windsocks,” explains Quin of her drawings, “They are not as important as the direction of the wind, or the wind itself.”

What results from Quin’s process are manifolds of chromatic and temporal counterpoint – paintings that hold space for a matrix of internal struggles: between the solid and the ephemeral, image and nonimage, symbol and cymbal. In this way, Quin is involved in charting a new and deeply self-reflexive mode of abstraction. Skirting the edges of signification and eschewing fixity, Quin’s paintings quest for what words cannot contain, circling around meaning rather than seeking to touch it directly.

Lauren Quin - Logopanic - Exhibitions - 125 Newbury Gallery

Photo: Lee Thompson

Lauren Quin (b. 1992) lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. She received her MFA from the Yale School of Art and a BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work was recently the subject of a solo exhibition at the Nerman Museum of Art (2023). Other solo presentations have taken place at the Pond Society in Shanghai (2022), at Blum & Poe in Los Angeles (2022) and Tokyo (2023), and at Friends Indeed in San Francisco (2021). Her paintings have been included in several group exhibitions, including at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami (2022), and reside in the collections of the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington, D.C.; Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, OH; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, TX; Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, CA; High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA; Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami, FL; Long Museum, Shanghai, China; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA; Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; Pérez Art Museum, Miami, FL; Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZ; Smart Museum, Chicago, IL; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; and the Yuz Museum, Shanghai, China.