Browse Lots

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
SEAN SCULLY (IRELAND/ USA, B. 1945)
PROPERTY FROM A DISTINGUISHED PRIVATE COLLECTION
SEAN SCULLY (IRELAND/ USA, B. 1945)

Wall of Light Fez

Details
SEAN SCULLY (IRELAND/ USA, B. 1945)
Wall of Light Fez
oil on linen
160 x 160 cm. (63 x 63 in.)
Painted in 2015
Provenance
Kewenig Galerie, Berlin.
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 2016.
Exhibited
Berlin, Germany, Kewenig Galerie, Sean Scully, September - December 2015.

Brought to you by

Kimmy Lau
Kimmy Lau

Check the condition report or get in touch for additional information about this

Condition Report

If you wish to view the condition report of this lot, please sign in to your account.

Sign in
View condition report

Lot Essay

'I think my paintings have a pronounced, built in, sense of morality. The light in my paintings is almost always sad and melancholic, but the surfaces are vital and sensual. I want people to be moved by my paintings. But I want them to find their own place.'
- SEAN SCULLY



Bands of green, mustard, cream, navy, and brilliant red are arranged into a patchwork of rich expression in Sean Scully’s Wall of Light Fez, 2015. Each stripe is roughly the same size, and together they form an interlocking, tessellating mosaic of line. Poignant and striking, Wall of Light Fez exemplifies Scully’s unwavering dedication to finding the metaphorical within a landscape of abstraction. The present work is an outstanding painting from the artist’s celebrated Wall of Light series, which signify a retreat from his earlier examination of conflict as a theme in the paintings of the 1980s. Inspired by a trip Scully took, the Wall of Light paintings are more optimistic, addressing the play of light and shadow in real world sites: The present work is part of his Wall of Light series, which signify a retreat from his earlier examination of conflict as a theme in the paintings of the 1980s. Instead, the Wall of Light paintings are more optimistic, addressing the play of light and shadow in real world sites: ‘The beginning of the Wall of Light paintings came when I was sitting on a beach in Mexico in Zihuatanejo,’ he recalled. ‘I’d been visiting the ruins and I was in a moment of repose, so I made a little watercolour that was a memory portrait of my impression of what I’d been doing. After seeing how the light at different times of the day had affected the sacred temples that I was visiting, I wrote Wall of Light under it. However, since I was involved in my ’80s collision paintings, the subject of which was discord—such as the way the city was slapped together, and the way people and ideas competed for survival—the Wall of Light paintings had to wait their turn. After all, I couldn’t really paint Utopia whilst painting pictures with titles like Clash ’ (S. Scully quoted in conversation with D. Carrier, The Brooklyn Rail, March 5, 2018). Inherent in the title of the series is Scully’s paradoxical aspiration: to make a wall that transcends physicality, a poetics of light and colour that remains firmly grounded in the actuality of life. In these works, Scully marries Minimalism’s geometric abstraction with the sublime drama of Abstract Expressionism, evident in the luminous stripes of Wall of Light Fez. Inherent in the work’s title is Scully’s paradoxical aspiration: to make a wall that transcends physicality, a poetics of light and colour that remains firmly grounded in the actuality of life.

More from 20th Century & Contemporary Art (Evening Sale)

View All
View All