Pace Prints is pleased to announce an exhibition of works by Alan Shields (1944–2005). On view April 19–May 24, 2019, the show will highlight the artist’s experimental printmaking. Please note that this exhibition has been extended through June 1.
Rather than executing conventional methods such as etching or lithography on paper, Shields embraced papermaking and cumulative techniques. Pushing the parameters of paper as a medium, he challenged traditional two-dimensional ideas of printmaking, by overlapping, dyeing, stitching and creating three-dimensional paper forms. In Sleeping Hair and Worm with a Spur, Shields layered playful pulpy compositions, by lightly sculpting, cutting and sewing their surfaces. There is an energetic vibration from their all-over forms; a delight in their creation.
In his Pop-Up Nature series of four, created in 2001, both volume and negative space become as integral as the exuberantly patterned grid. Shields’ anything-goes philosophy in their making is highlighted, as etching, relief and handmade paper were all employed. Titles, such as Better Mousetrap, give a notion of the playful spirit with which he created the work.
Cowboy Turbin Elephant, a unique work on canvas, is at once sensuously joyous and meditative. Shields’ Buddhist philosophy is manifest in the interlocking patterns; an expression of his ideals of artistic practice and life. This brilliant work was gifted to Pace Editions in 1989, the year it was created, and is on view for the very first time.
Born in Herington, KS, in 1944, Shields attended Kansas State University from 1963 to 1966, studying civil engineering and studio art. He moved to New York City in 1968, where he showed with Paula Cooper Gallery for over twenty years. Shields was a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1973, a year after he permanently moved to his home in Shelter Island, NY. Alan Shields is in the collections of the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY; Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; Tate Collection, London, UK; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY.