We’ve featured the work of Kevin Cyr in the past, and just recently, the Brooklyn-based artist opened his latest solo exhibit at Jonathan Levine Gallery. In Praise of Rust consists of new oil paintings that continues to focus on old vehicles seen on the streets of New York – primarily vans and commercial delivery trucks – covered in graffiti, rust, scratches, scuffs, dents and other marks of distinction. Cyr includes a meticulous level of detail in his portrait-like representations with devoted attention to every imperfection and sign of age. Removing the context of the urban landscape, he places a strong focus on his subjects by isolating them in fields of flat, solid color.
More after the jump.
The neglected appearance and utilitarian function of these vans carry a bit of nostalgia. Once ubiquitous in large urban cities, they have now become far more rare, replaced by heavily branded box trucks. In the artist’s words, “painting them is my way of documenting a grit that is slowly disappearing from New York. In a culture where people are lured by the appeal of status-enhancing symbols, I find so much character in derelict vans. I have always been interested in painting vehicles that have defined the evolution of the American landscape.”
pic and info: Jonathan Levine Gallery