Exclusive representation of Peter Halley in Germany
Galerie Thomas has already been working with Peter Halley for ten years -
since 2011 we are exclusively representing the American artist in Germany.
Exhibitions with works by Peter Halley
NEW PAINTINGS • Sep 13 - Nov 9 2019
For the season’s opening OPEN ART 2019, Galerie Thomas Modern shows new large scale paintings by Peter Halley.
Peter Halley’s paintings are characterized by geometry, strong colours and strictly consequent composition. They can be read as a critique of a society increasingly controlled by systems of communication, provision and traffic – structures, that don’t even allow the individual to escape from. At the same time, Halley is investigating the essence of painting beyond image and representation.
“New paintings” is a programmatic title: for more than three decades, Peter Halley has been reviewing and reorienting non-figurative painting. Halley even extended his investigation from painting to large installations: most recently in his project “Heterotopia” at this year’s Venice Biennial. In his new works, Halley intensifies the importance of light, emanating from colour and space in painting.
88,9 x 88,9 cm / 35 x 35 in.
digital print on vinyl on dibond, 2017
verso signed, dated and numbered
edition of 16 + 3 A. P. + 1 E. C.
Editor Galerie Thomas Modern, Munich, 2017
Price: € 3.350,-
As part of its longstanding collaboration with Peter Halley, Galerie Thomas Modern published an edition by the American artist titled Explosion.
Here, the 'Exploding Cell' motif - one of the recurring basic elements of Halley’s visual language – is shown against a glossy silver background. In a very small edition of only 16 prints – all hand-signed, dated and numbered by the artist, the works are remarkable for their special, sophisticated printing technique and the high-quality presentation. Explosion is available exclusively from Galerie Thomas Modern.
With regard to form and content, the 'Exploding Cell' stands in an apparent contradiction to the geometrically governed compositions of Peter Halley’s paintings. The chaotic-expressive energy erupting from these vibrant images is in complete opposition to the strictly delimited, rectangular colour planes of the cells, prisons and conduits that make up his paintings.
In fact, 'Explosion' also describes the acute state of sudden resolution of the rigid diagrammatic structure, the prevailing enforced order that Peter Halley focuses on in his paintings. The explosion is thus a different, new state of the rigid 'Cells', and therein lies the artist’s intended ambivalence of the explosion: it is not destruction but liberation. The geometrical grid that determines our lives – from the distribution and communication networks, via the cellular organisation of buildings and cities, through to technology micro-networks of every kind – broken up and set free to allow a different, individual design.
SAW: A Suite of Four New Paintings
September 9 - November 5, 2016
To mark the opening of the season with OPEN art, Galerie Thomas Modern presented in 2016 the latest works by Peter Halley. Peter Halley calls the four large-format canvases SAW I – IV, 'grid paintings', a technique he has used since 2014 to introduce a new formal component into his work.
In these highly minimalistic but large-scale grids, the clearly delimited colour surfaces remain without information content or symbolic meaning. Initially, the colour contrasts are the only information, whereas the composition is contingent in its effect and the underlying order pattern or arrangement scheme is not deducible. Nevertheless, the question arises as to whether the sequence and the size ratio of the surfaces to one another don’t contain a code after all. Here, Halley emphasises the importance and role of geometry: is it a pattern underlying the world, an unveiling of the most secret systems of order, or a rigid explanation schema, devised by man and opposed to the organic?
The contrast between the coldness of the mathematics, the geometry and the warmth of the colour, of the sensual perception, leads us to the core of Halley’s artistic criticism of the limitations of systematic measurement and classification of the world. At the same time, he thereby addresses one of the oldest aesthetic theories – that the sense of beauty is determined by proportions. In the history of art, there have been many diverse, exhaustive efforts to fathom the mathematical rules of beauty – one only needs to remember Leonardo’s Vitruvian Man and the importance of the golden ratio.
PETER HALLEY at ART BASEL UNLIMITED
June 16 - 19, 2016
At the Art Basel Unlimited 2016, Galerie Thomas Modern presented a new wall installation with paintings by Peter Halley, especially designed for the fair and titled Weak Force. Peter Halley will install new so-called 'grid' paintings from his recently started series on a wall of 4 meters height and 18 meters length approximately, decorated with a digitally printed wallpaper echoing the colour patterns of the paintings by depicting exploding colour cells. The surface design of the paintings is contrasting the recurring pattern of the wallpaper, creating an impressive colour field that challenges the viewer's perception.
Halley's work has been exploring geometrical patterns, colour and surface structures and their organisation, as an investigation in the structure of modern technological layouts
of communication, architecture, supply facilities etc. The domination of digitally defined layouts in frames and layers is visible in all of his works, while in his newest paintings, Halley stresses rectangular colour fields without outlining structures as in his 'cells', 'prisons' and 'conduits'. Associations of large scale image pixels are still present in these recent works, and therefore also Halley's questions on organisation and construction of space, communication and its regulation.
Peter Halleys grid paintings obviously give a contradictory information on the overall structure which is simultaneously visible and indicates kind of a time structure. It remains unclear if this information concentrates on a certain detail in time or constellation of colour fields or if it is rather a random choice, imposing a point of view that leaves no tolerance to the viewer. Even though the strict rules of composition are clearly visible, Halley reveals how the hierarchy of information influences the rules of perception.
May 23 - July 19, 2014
Following on from the exhibition of his ‘Prisons’ and ‘Cells’ in autumn 2011 at Galerie Thomas Modern, which attracted wide attention, we were showing Peter Halley’s latest works directly from his New York studio in summer 2014.
Peter Halley continues to develop his principal motif of 'Prisons'. He opens up the customarily closed picture structure, and largely dispenses with compact symmetrical arrangements. In his latest works, Halley allows the ‘Prisons’ to correspond with one another in a new, playful way within each picture. Not all ‘Cells’ are connected to one another; the artist allows some to float completely free in space.
For his startling canvases the artist uses acrylic paint and fluorescent industrial paint mixed with relief particles, creating a grainy, rough surface structure. For many years, his paintings have been engaging in a play of relationships between what Halley calls 'prisons' and 'cells' – icons that reflect the increasing “geometricization of social space in the world in which we live” (Halley). Besides painting, Halley is also an author engaging in social-philosophical discourse.
In parallel with the exhibition at Galerie Thomas Modern, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena presented the exhibition PETER HALLEY ‘PRISONS’ at the Old Tram Depot in Jena from May 10 to July 27, 2014.
September 9 - November 19, 2011
With this extensive solo show in 2011, Galerie Thomas Modern started the exclusive representation of the US-American artist Peter Halley in Germany. Beside his recent paintings, we could also present a wall-sized digital print-installation which Halley created especially for this occasion.
JOSEF ALBERS · DONALD JUDD · PETER HALLEY
November 6, 2008 - January 19, 2009
Three artists of different origin and from different generations, connected by something obvious: they deal with colour and geometric shapes.
The youngest of the three representatives of abstract art, Peter Halley, refers to Albers as well as Judd in his art. His works unite vivid colour planes with spatial structures, principally manifested in his experiments with various materials and the creative structuring of surfaces of his mixed media on canvas. In Halley's works the tradition of his precursors, Albers and Judd, are transported into the 21st century.