Guy Lyman

Aggregate #23, 2022
Acrylic,House Paint,Charcoal,Pastel
24 x 18 in
$780
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(Comes framed in a maple floater frame, ready to hang.) This is one of our most popular series. Here's a recent message from a buyer of a painting in this series, a seasoned collector: "Love your work. We collect colorists like Wolf Kahn and Jennifer Bartlett, whom I commissioned a piece from that is in the entrance of Mayo Clinic. We are old fans of Morris Louis and we see a Cy Twombly reminiscence in your work, but in a totally new original and fresh perspective in your work. We decided this morning that we would move/give away other work to add your to our collection if it is right for you. Thanks for sharing your talents. " The paintings from this series are selling into prominent collections both in the U.S. and abroad. Here's the Artist's Statement: "I began this series after being inspired by a passage of pastel in a painting that was very different from this, and playing around with altering the quality of the line by drawing more sharply or broadly, smearing, and mixing with water and acrylic. The colors are bright and tend towards the decorative, but the more industrial and acid colors keep these pictures from being too 'pretty.' There are also the drips and roughness of the strokes to militate against the merely decorative. Some of the circular forms are fading, others are coming forward, depending both on color, lightness and sharpness of articulation. So there is a lot of push-pull tension here. You can't make this kind of painting without somehow referencing Cy Twombly, either directly or through his influence on others. But there's also Ida Kohlmeyer, the most famous modernist painter from New Orleans. I find her "heiroglyphs" a little too tight and contrived for my taste, but she was great with color which brought verve to the random forms she worked with in her later and most popular paintings." “Lyman’s work evolves restlessly, with the common elements generally being deft and unusual color choices that balance assonance and dissonance, and vestiges of the hand and facture purposely left in the paintings. The negative space is often so meticulously worked that it’s almost as if the objects – usually simple shapes – are there as much to complement the background as vice versa. Despite the often bold colors there is an elegance about his paintings that prevents them from being either loud or decorative. " Artbeit Zeitschrift “His paintings are a refreshing departure from the current abstract art world’s seemingly endless parade of fields of color with scribbles providing form, a style that is easily mimicked and has become a sort of “safe,” accessible go-to. There are confident decisions in these paintings appearing as commitments of strongly delineated forms and unexpected collisions of color that give the work a visceral, confident and playful soul, increasingly missing from contemporary expressionist abstraction. They are the paintings of a real painter rather than a decorative artist.” ArtSeen, 2018


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.