Catalogue raisonné of paintings realized by Peter Halley between 1980 and 1989.
Peter Halley is a prominent figure in contemporary art. A member of the New York dynamic art scene of the 1980s, he gained recognition as one of the main champions of the Neo-geo movement with his geometric paintings rendered in intense fluorescent Day-Glo acrylic paint and Roll-a-Tex texture additive. Since the mid-1990s his site-specific installations and permanent public works have extended his practice to a larger scale.
A landmark publication for all those interested in contemporary painting, this catalogue raisonné of Peter Halley's paintings from the 1980s gathers together the complete body of 186 works realized between 1980 and 1989 and fully documents them for the first time. Showing the evolution of his work, it makes clear how Halley built his own geometric and chromatic vocabulary to challenge the then prevailing ideas about the nature and history of abstract painting, and how figures such as the cell, the prison, the conduit, and the brick wall came into existence, in parallel with his own thinking—inspired in part by French Structuralist theory
—about modern life (urban design, media, new mass digital technologies) and the increasing geometrization of social space.
Introduced by art historian Cara Jordan, editor of this extensive research-based publication, the book also includes an illustrated biography, an essay by art critic and curator Paul Pieroni, and an anthology of seminal texts written by the artist in the 1980s.
Peter Halley (born 1953 in New York City, where he lives and works) received his BA from Yale University and his MFA from the University of New Orleans in 1978, remaining in New Orleans until 1980. For over twenty-five years, Peter Halley's geometric paintings have been engaged in a play of relationships between what he calls “prisons” and “cells”—icons that reflect the increasing geometricization of social space in the world in which we live. Halley is one of the original members of the “Neo-Geo
Halley has had one-person museum exhibitions at the CAPC
musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux (1991), the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid (1992), the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (1992), the Des Moines Art Center (1992), the Dallas Museum of Art (1995), the Museum of Modern Art, New York (1997), the Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art (1998), the Museum Folkwang, Essen (1998), and the Butler Institute of American Art (1999).
His work has been exhibited in galleries in Chicago, London, Madrid, Moscow, New York, Paris, Rome, Seoul, and Tokyo. Since the mid-1990s, Halley has produced site-specific installations for exhibitions and as permanent public works. These projects have been realized at the State University of New York, Buffalo (1998), the city library in Usera, Spain (2002), the Banco Suisso d'Italia Art Collection, Turin (2003), and the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport in Texas (2005). In 2008, he completed a large permanent installation for the Gallatin School at New York University.
Halley has also written on art and culture throughout his career. His early essays, which address post-structuralism, post-modernism, and the digital revolution of the 1980s, have been anthologized in two books of collected writings. In 2001, he received the Frank Jewett Mather Award from the College Art Association in the U.S. for his critical writing.
From 1984 to 1987, he managed the gallery International With Monument with Ashley Bickerton
, Jeff Koons and Meyer Vaisman. From 1996 to 2006, Peter Halley published Index Magazine
, which featured in-depth interviews with creative people. He has taught at Columbia University, UCLA, and the School of Visual Arts. Halley was Director of Graduate Studies in Painting and Printmaking at the Yale University School of Art from 2002 to 2011.