About the Exhibit - Pastel
Nicolas Party’s exhibit, Pastel, completely transformed both floors of the Flag Art Foundation on October 10th, 2019-February 15th, 2020.
“ I like modifying the architecture of the gallery space in order to create a set for the paintings—changing wall colors, creating murals of or installing the actual historical paintings I’m inspired by. I need to create a decor for the story to be activated, similar to a theatrical stage.” - Nicolas Party (source)
The pastel theme extends not just in the color scheme but in the medium. Most of the works in the exhibit area created entirely with pastels.
“The exhibition centers on soft pastel, a fragile and ultimately temporal medium that experienced its brief golden age in eighteenth-century France, and arguably Europe” (source)
The unique thing about this exhibit was that Party included not only works of his own, but carefully curated his works alongside artists from the eighteenth-century to the present day.
“The pastel show at the FLAG Art Foundation was something I had always dreamed of doing. An opportunity to create a set where not only my own work but also works from artists I admire will be displayed.” - Nicolas Party (source)
Rosalba Carriera (1675-1757)
Mary Cassatt (1844-1926)
Edgar Degas (1834-1917)
Louis Fratino (b. 1993)
Marsden Hartley (1877-1943)
Loie Hollowell (b. 1983)
Julian Martin (b. 1969)
Toyin Ojih Odutola (b. 1985)
Chris Ofili (b. 1968)
Jean-Baptiste Perronneau (1715-1783)
Billy Sullivan (b. 1946)
Wayne Thiebaud (b. 1920)
Robin F. Williams (b. 1984)
“There was the confidence inherent in Party’s bold, brilliant colors; the confidence it takes to hang your eighteenth-century inspirations next to your own freshly finished works; and the confidence of nature herself, the butterflies and frogs and flowers that burst forth so powerfully from Party’s pastel universe.” - BOMB Magazine (source)
"Loose, gestural pastels by Billy Sullivan chronicle the artist’s broader circle of friends and fellow artists, while Toyin Ojih Odutola’s fictional portrait of a Nigerian aristocratic explores color, class, and race through intricate mark-making." (source)
“Robin F. Williams and Louis Fratino assert the primacy of the nude: Williams’s stylized women fuse early modernism and the staged informality of advertising, whereas Fratino’s bedroom-eyed figures recall funerary portraits from ancient Roman Egypt.” (source)
The most stunning part of the exhibit (IMO) are the murals that Nicolas Party created.
“Each mural was designed based on a painting from another artist. For example, one mural was made after Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s painting series called The Progress of Love….We hung a portrait by the Venetian Rococo painter Rosalba Carriera on top of the mural. What you see in the show contains all those layers: the original Fragonard painting, my mural version of the Fragonard, and the Rosalba portrait. Together they form a new work.” - Nicolas Party
About the Artist - Nicolas Party
Nicolas Party is a Swiss artist who lives and works in Brussels, Belgium, and New York.
He earned his BA in Fine art at the Lausanne School of Art, and his MA at The Glasgow School of Art, United Kingdom.
Nicolas Party is represented by Hauser & Wirth Gallery.