Full tilt: Bernard Frize’s contemporary drip paintings at Galerie Perrotin

Full tilt: Bernard Frize’s contemporary drip paintings at Galerie Perrotin

While Paris- and Berlin-based painter Bernard Frize is best known in Europe, he is now receiving his dues with Galerie Perrotin’s ‘Bernard Frize: Dawn comes up so young’, which happens to be the New York gallery’s first solo show devoted to his oeuvre. The stately brick Georgian building is the perfect setting for Frize’s paintings, which owe a nod to Morris Louis’ acclaimed diaphanous drip endeavors.

Mixing synthetic resin with acrylic paint, Frize turns to a subtle palette of pink, lavender and blue, tilting the canvas slightly so the paint flows to the very bottom. There’s a performative aspect to his technique; with the artist’s fluid application of paint, he explains that his objective is for the work ‘to make itself’. This approach is perfectly encapsulated in the works Capiteux, Elfuenté and Fragante, in which the top of the canvas is anchored by an amorphous form in black. All were completed last year.

And while his thin fluid application of paint may seem spontaneous, Frize is exacting. Frequently, he will complete a total of ten paintings, rejecting nine of them. Many of the other works on show rely on amorphous geometric shapes.

With Frize’s work represented in the collections of the Tate, Centre Pompidou, the MoMA, and a slew of museums in Switzerland and Vienna, this exhibition is certain to cement the artist’s Stateside reputation.

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