The first in a series of new explorations of MOCA, North Miami’s permanent collection, we present an exhibition of works on paper dating from the 1960s through the 1980s. Whether a drawing, painting, print, photograph, collage or sculpture, all of the works on display feature paper in some capacity.
A seemingly simple and accessible material, artists utilize paper in a variety of ways. Some, like Ree Morton, develop a piece as a sketch or a collage and ultimately execute the subject in a different media, based on their drawings. For others like Pat Steir, the initial work on paper is the finished piece. Moreover, many well-established American artists such as Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg began experimenting with print processes in the 1960s and 1970s, working closely with master printers to achieve their desired results. In addition to expanding artists’ practices, print portfolios and editions meant that their artwork could potentially be made more affordable and widely available. By concentrating on works on paper created from the 1960s to the 1980s, the exhibition includes examples of Pop art, Minimalism and Post-Minimalism, while some objects reflect a specific political moment or social concern.
This exhibition features artists working with paper that has been specifically (and expensively) produced for painting or print- making, as well as artwork created with materials appropriated and repurposed from daily life. Roberto Juarez and Purvis Young transformed newsprint and old ledgers respectively into works of art that are carefully preserved, alongside objects in more traditional media, in MOCA’s collection. As a result, the works are available for the community to enjoy.
– Elizabeth Shannon Ph.D.