Alexis Rockman: Works on Paper



ISBN: 9788862087551 Category:

Todd Bradway, Helen Molesworth, David Rimanelli


With a career spanning over three decades, internationally acclaimed artist Alexis Rockman is well known for his complex, large scale paintings and works on paper depicting the collision between civilization and nature. The artist synthesizes elements of human history, natural science and landscape painting; a passionate interest in climate change and globalization; and a healthy dose of art history and science fiction, to create images that reveal our world balancing on the precipice. Beyond their lush surfaces, radiant washes of color, and technical inventiveness belies a dark humor, an intense curiosity and a probing intelligence that serves to heighten the power and urgency of his invented narratives. Works on Paper is the first comprehensive survey of the artist’s graphic work, documenting his extraordinary accomplishments as a draftsman through a meticulous selection of watercolors, gouaches, oil drawings, field studies, and sketchbooks. Designed in close collaboration with the artist, the book reproduces 120 works, many of which have never before been published. Included are his earliest watercolors from the 1980s, often of hybrid and mutated animals; Field Drawings, created in Guyana and other remote locations from mud sourced on site; the ominously beautiful and apocalyptic Weather Drawings; painterly works relating to his epic The Great Lakes Cycle; and Lost at Sea, his most recent body of work reimagining famed and historic shipwrecks. The book includes a visual appendix of Rockman’s graphic influences, with commentary by the artist. Works on Paper is a valuable addition to scholarship on the artist, providing a critical understanding of a visionary oeuvre made at the intersection of art, nature and science.

Additional information

Weight 1566 g
Dimensions 24.5 x 29.5 cm
Publisher name Damiani Editore
Publication date 10 February 2022
Number of pages 224
Format Hardback
Dimensions 24.5 x 29.5 cm
Weight 1566 g


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Born in 1962 in New York, where he lives and works, Alexis Rockman has depicted a darkly surreal vision of the collision between civilization and nature - often apocalyptic scenarios on a monumental scale - for over three decades. Notable solo museum exhibitions include Alexis Rockman: Manifest Destiny at the Brooklyn Museum (2004), which traveled to several institutions including the Wexner Center for the Arts (2004) and the Rhode Island School of Design (2005). In 2010, the Smithsonian American Art Museum organized Alexis Rockman: A Fable for Tomorrow, a major touring survey of his paintings and works on paper. Concurrent with Rockman's 2013 exhibition at Sperone Westwater, the Drawing Center mounted Drawings from Life of Pi, featuring the artist's collaboration with Ang Lee on the award-winning film Life of Pi. In 2018 Alexis Rockman: The Great Lakes Cycle, a major touring exhibition of large-scale paintings and watercolors, as well as field drawings, of the Great Lakes was on view at the Grand Rapids Art Museum and traveled to institutions in the Great Lakes region, including the Chicago Cultural Center, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, Haggerty Museum of Art at Marquette University, Weisman Art Museum and the Flint Institute of Arts. Rockman's work is represented in many museum collections, including the Baltimore Museum of Art; Brooklyn Museum; Grand Rapids Art Museum; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; New Orleans Museum of Art; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Smithsonian American Art Museum; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; and Whitney Museum of American Art.

Helen Molesworth is a curator and writer who recently hosted a podcast series called "Recording Artists" with The Getty. Her major exhibitions include: One Day at a Time: Manny Farber and Termite Art; Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933-1957; Dance/Draw; This Will Have Been: Art, Love & Politics in the 1980s; Part Object Part Sculpture, and Work Ethic. She has organized monographic exhibitions of Moyra Davey, Noah Davis, Louise Lawler, Steve Locke, Anna Maria Maiolino, Josiah McElheny, Kerry James Marshall, Catherine Opie, Amy Sillman, and Luc Tuymans. She is the author of numerous catalogue essays and her writing has appeared in Artforum, Art Journal, Documents, and October. The recipient of the 2011 Bard Center for Curatorial Studies Award for Curatorial Excellence, she serves as the Curator-in-Residence for the Anderson Ranch in Aspen.

David Rimanelli began writing about art in 1988 and has chronicled developments in the New York art world for over two decades. From 1993 to 1999, he was a regular contributor to The New Yorker; since 1997 he has been a contributing editor at Artforum, writing also for Bookforum, Interview, Texte zur Kunst, Vogue Paris, frieze, The New York Times, and Flash Art.