David Reed [Gallery 330]


David Reed
American, born 1946
#563, 2006-07
Oil and alkyd on polyester
Gift of funds from Alfred and Ingrid Lenz Harrison, Beverly Grossman, Mary Ingebrand-Pohlad, Robert and Lucy Mitchell, John and Martha Gabbert, Siri and Bob Marshall, Barbara S. Longfellow, Blythe Brenden, and John and Karen Himle 2010.53


David Reed’s art cannot be discussed without reference to the legacy of abstract painting in the United States and the supreme example of Abstract Expressionism. At the same time, his work invokes the historic artistic styles of Baroque and Mannerism. The artist has likened his markings to the billowing cloaks that cover figures in baroque painting, such as the Virgin Mary’s robe in Castiglione’s The Immaculate Conception with Saints Francis of Assisi and Anthony of Padua, also on view in Gallery 330.

Despite the similarities between Mary’s robe and the undulating folds in #563, Reed firmly believes any art movement has to be radically re-invented to be relevant to the present. Commenting on his use of light, Reed said, “During the Renaissance and Baroque periods they had a wonderful religious light that came from above. Today we have a technological light, the light of a TV, movie screen, or computer monitor, which is directionless and increases the intensity of every color.”

We were lucky to have David Reed at the MIA as an artist-in-residence. He offered some great insight on #563 in this video interview.


Il Grechetto (Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione)
Italian (Genoa), 1609 – 1664
The Immaculate Conception with Saints Francis of Assisi and Anthony of Padua, 1650
Oil on canvas
The Putnam Dana McMillan Fund 66.39

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