Benny Andrews is part of an exhibition on view at Jonathan Boos Gallery called Juxtaposed: Paintings, Sculpture, and Photographs. The exhibition highlights and arranges 20th century artists working in various mediums around similar themes. The curation is fun and whimsical. The show isn’t theoretical, nor is it historical. The pairing of disparate works suggest for the mind to make new realizations and connections. It also allows for an emotional response to each work both individually and within a diverse aesthetic dialectic. One of the many connections comes from Jacob Lawrence, whose painting of a street scene in the Manhattan neighborhood of Harlem is shown alongside black and white photographs of children at play by Walter Rosenblum and Bruce Davidson. These works express a celebration and vitality of everyday life through vignettes of New York City’s African American and immigrant communities.
Included in this exhibition is Andrews’ Beholden (1963), a stirring collage portrait of a woman holding an orange. The collage is juxtaposed with a series of black and white photographs by Kristoffer Albrecht, Paul Caponigro, and Horst P. Horst, which have similar sense of perspective and allure. About Beholden Andrews said: “I set out to show the importance of food to sustaining life. I was inspired by the plight of poor people who have to spend so much time and energy in obtaining the very basic necessities of life. I wanted the person to be both reaching out to the viewer with the orange and pulling in with it.”
The exhibition, coordinated between the Jonathan Boos Gallery and Peter Fetterman Gallery in Santa Monica, is going on through October 31st at the Jonathan Boos Gallery (801 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10065).