Alex Katz is back in Manhattan. When the pandemic began, he spent three months in Pennsylvania, then three in Maine, where he has a house and where he studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in the summer of 1949. Katz celebrated his 93rd birthday on July 24th.
In a recent interview with the UK Financial Times, Katz said that he’s back in the SoHo home and studio that he, and his wife, Ada, moved to in 1968. He says that he’s social distancing, but not just to avoid the virus. “Any person on the planet can be interesting for five minutes.” he said, “A lot of people are not interesting for 20 minutes. If you have dinner with a person, they have to be interesting for a couple of hours.”
A large monograph of Katz’s works has just been released by Rizzoli, edited by art critic Carter Ratcliff, who calls Katz an artist of the immediate, a description that Katz agrees with. His paintings and sculptures capture a moment when the details of something, or someone, you are looking at, come into sharp focus.
Katz has a large following in Europe where, he says, “people wait outside my hotel room for autographs.” His success in America, although great, has not been like those of his trend-setting abstract, Pop and post-modernist peers. He hasn’t had a major retrospective in the U.S. since a Whitney Museum retrospective in 1968.
That is about to change…The Guggenheim in New York has been getting ready for a major retrospective of his work in 2022.
Like Katz, Wood paints from his surroundings, although he often uses photographs and collage to create a complete composition.
Many of his works are based on the sculptures of his wife, ceramic artist Shio Kusaka, with whom he shares a home and studio in Los Angeles.
His works can be found in the permanent collections of the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, the Saatchi Gallery in London, and The Museum of Modern Art in New York.
The Works of Alex Katz and Jonas Wood at Surovek Gallery
Please contact us if you would like more information about the works of Alex Katz, Jonas Wood or any of the other fine artists whose works are available at Surovek Gallery.
Lou Stoppard. Alex Katz: the ‘artist of the immediate’ on why his time is now. Financial Times. November 2, 2020.
Emma Brockes. Interview: Alex Katz: “The smartest people bought my work’. The Guardian. October 29, 2018.