Spanierman Modern    A Division of Spanierman Gallery, LLC




Marcia Scott: The Black Paintings
Online Exhibition


Contact: Betsy Ann Craig (


Spanierman Gallery is pleased to present an online exhibition of seven paintings from Marcia Scott’s new series The Black Paintings. This exhibition is an exclusive and exciting first look of the artist’s most recent work. Following in the Abstract Expressionist tradition, Scott explores the versatility of the painting medium to create vibrant and dynamic works that have been likened to musical scores in the interplay between pigment and texture on an intense black ground. 


The works expand the possibilities of the enamel paint medium, taking it from its traditional utilitarian application into an aesthetic use, producing highly reflective and mesmerizing surfaces of stark line and color. The series includes canvases that are both large and small-scale, of relatively square shape, with each individual piece showcasing the artist’s distinctive visual style. The viewer is invited into and yet reflected back from the depths of the shadow world of the glossy surface, producing a multi-sensory experience of the work that borders on the sculptural. The background of the paintings is saturated with pure pigment, with Scott working in a process-based technique of pouring to create the flowing shapes. The paint is applied to the canvas while it is placed flat on the floor, a technique reflective of her tutelage under Frank Bowling, the first black Royal Academician and an artist honored with the Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.) for his service to art, with the final works stretched in his NYC studio.


According to the artist, the series can be viewed as an exploration of her fascination with black gloss, drawing inspiration from the sensuous surface of a patent leather shoe and the viscous quality of an oil slick, and transferring it onto the canvas surface. Black paint holds many art historical associations from Francisco Goya’s haunting Black Paintings to the body of work by Robert Rauschenberg known as the Black paintings that explore the boundary between painting and collage as well as Ad Reinhardt’s ultimate “black” paintings that marked the endpoint of years of experimentation. Scott’s series, in both style and content, builds upon this tradition, and invites the viewer to explore the multi-layered dynamism of the works.

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