Icon No. 19
All rights reserved by Frank Mann
The following information was provided by the artist unless otherwise noted.
Frank Mann is a painter, draughtsman, and printmaker. Born in Washington, D.C., he graduated from George Washington University, B.F.A, and after moving to New York, he received an M.F.A. from Pratt Institute. For several years he worked as an assistant to Dorothea Rockburne, and directed several arts organizations within New York City. He writes occasionally on contemporary art. The recipient of numerous grants and awards, he has exhibited widely in Europe, including exhibitions in Amsterdam, Paris, Barcelona, and Berlin, and in the United States, including New York, Seattle, Miami, and Washington, D.C., and in South America, in Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo.
He has been a guest lecturer at several institutions including the Corcoran College of Art, Washington, DC; Penn State University; Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY; and the Parson's School of Design, NY. His work is included in numerous public and private collections in the United States and abroad including the Museum of Modern Art, Buenos Aires, Argentina; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Nice, France; the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Nationalgallerie, Berlin, Germany; and the Museum of Modern Art, NY. He is a member of several professional organizations including New York Artists Equity Association, the American Society of Contemporary Artists, and the Association D'Art International, Mirabel, France. He is listed in the 26th edition of 'Who's Who in American Art,' 2006, and the 23rd edition of 'Who's Who in the World,' 2006. He lives and works in New York City.
Consider the loose circular structures that organize Mann's new series "Oculus." The circle, an image of history, decrees the natural dynamism and circularity of living life. Mann infuses this form of life with bright reds, blues, and yellows equally suggestive of the eyes implied by the title, the sun and the constellation of the planets, as well as abstract thought processes. Yet and still, these are vehemently proud abstract paintings in the realm of Rothko, de Kooning, and Marden. Mann's work holds its own in this company with his unique brand of drawing with color to convey voluminous light and deployment of forms that provoke a multitude of valid associations. The repetition of circles in Mann's process and the material engagement with oil paint applied to canvas has become a poetic language occupying the energy of life made visible. His paintings are the structural signs of energy, and in that mode they work as gorgeous signs of drama played out by color and shape evocative of art's vast and revelatory power for the possiblity of transcendental experience. As Mark Rothko once said, "I do not believe that there was ever a question of being abstract or representational. It is really a matter of ending this silence and solitude, of breathing and stretching one's arms again." Mann's paintings do just that.
Franklin Sirmans, critic and independent curator
Regina Stewart, Executive Director