Guy Lyman

5X Cindy Sherman Matisse, 1996
Oil Paint
24 x 48 in

I am an abstract painter, so this is an unusual painting for me. As I recall, I had seen a photo in perhaps ArtForum of Cindy Sherman (performance/photography artist) dressed as a Matisse character? Or maybe I turned her into one? Or rather five, with subtle variations – I had this long canvas at hand and I liked the idea of the repetition. At any rate, the lines are somewhere between Matisse’s and my own – slashy and expressionistic. There’s some drawing in there, as there is is most of my (abstract) paintings. I think it turned out to be a fun and pleasing painting.

I have been painting for about 30 years, since before I was a dealer. I always was and remain most drawn to so-called “painterly” painters, whose interest is less in the formal aspects of painting than in the paint itself, and signs of the artist’s hand in its application. Initially I was drawn to paintings from the magical period between New York Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art, by artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Jim Dine and Cy Twombly. In the Eighties, it was New York neo-Expressionists such as Julian Schnabel, Terry Winters and Donald Baechler. As you can see, in the past few years my paintings have become more formal, but you can still see a lot of the hand in them. I grew up in New Orleans, lived in various places in the U.S. and Europe, then returned to "the Big Easy" to open my Magazine Street gallery, which I sold in 2017 before moving my art business entirely online. I still enjoy meeting fellow art collectors and painters when they visit New Orleans.