Jackie Saccoccio (B. 1963)
signed, titled and dated 'Curtain, 2011 Saccoccio' (on the reverse)
oil and mica on canvas
84 x 72in. (213.2 x 182.9cm.)
Executed in 2011
Eleven Rivington Gallery, New York.
Acquired from the above in 2012.
New York, Eleven Rivington, Portraits, 2012.
London, Saatchi Gallery, Abstract America Today, 2014.

Lot Essay

Jackie Saccoccio works with a clear and often unexpected sense of her artistic forebears, and in Curtain, she synthesises unusual sources to powerful effect. Citing artists ranging from Ghirlandaio and Titian to Lichtenstein and Yuskavage, Saccoccio has also claimed influence from the landscape paintings of Hudson River School. Indeed, the palette of this painting, dominated by reds and oranges, recalls autumnal or sunset scenes by Bierstadt or Cropsey – only any tranquility that the work’s colouring might invoke is lost in the visceral physicality of the paint’s application. Puddles of paint poured in striking pink and blue collect around the painting’s edges, while the frenetic lines crossing its centre record Saccoccio’s method of turning the painting and allowing the wet paint already applied to flow around the canvas. Here the obvious touchstones are the Abstract Expressionists – Saccoccio associates her work particularly with Joan Mitchell and Jasper Johns – but Saccoccio’s work uses similar methods to ask different questions. Less concerned with the kind of spiritual and spontaneous expression of self associated with much Abstract Expressionism, Saccoccio instead works from notes, using the dynamism of action painting’s techniques in order to achieve something more pre-meditated. ‘Usually, I think a painting is done when I feel a reconnection to the ideas I originally had,’ she says, ‘they never look like what I expected them to look like, but they have something about them.’ In this sense, then, her method blurs the specific qualities of her artistic intentions and influences, while sustaining a more intangible quality that lives on in the finished work.

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