Top Picks from Frieze

Jonathan Prince Studio is pleased to share our top picks from Frieze New York this past weekend, as well as highlights from Chelsea galleries and the Whitney Museum

Frieze New York is an international contemporary art fair that launched in May 2012. In 2015 the fair includes over 190 of the world’s leading galleries, making Frieze New York 2015 the company’s largest event to date. Like Frieze London, Frieze New York is housed in a bespoke temporary structure, suffused with natural light. The fair is located in Randall’s Island Park, Manhattan.

Newport Beach Inaugural Sculpture Exhibition

Jonathan Prince, in collaboration with Cynthia-Reeves Projects of New York, was selected to contribute a monumental sculpture to the Newport Beach Inaugural Sculpture Exhibition at the Newport Beach Civic Center's 14-acre ocean-view site.  Red, a work carved from African black granite, was installed on April 27 and will remain on view through August of 2016.

260 submissions from artists located worldwide were received and juried by a local selection committee consisting of up to three Newport Beach Arts Commissioners, two local arts professionals (Dan Cameron, Interim Director and Chief Curator at the Orange County Museum of Art and Richard Turner, Artist, Professor, and Co- Director of The Guggenheim Gallery at Chapman University), and Christina Varvi, art conservator of Rosa Lowinger & Associates, Los Angeles and Miami.  Prince was one of ten artists chosen to participate in the exhibition.

Red is a bi-concave disc form with a mirror-polished surface designed to reflect the environment in which it sits. The reflected images morph and distort, pulling the viewer from the illusory comfort of perceived order. Red is a part of Prince’s ongoing series entitled States of Matter, a body of work that represents the artist’s interest in exploring the ways in which we perceive materials – or phases of matter (solid, liquid, gas, plasma) –  and our understanding of how such materials behave and influence our lives.  

Exhibition at West Branch Gallery and Sculpture Park

Several sculptures by Jonathan Prince are featured in the current exhibition Subtle, Not Subtle: Evocative Nuance at West Branch Gallery and Sculpture Park in Stowe, Vermont. 

Subtle, Not Subtle: Evocative Nuance

February 14 – June 3, 2015 in the North Gallery
Reception: February 28, 2015, 6-8:30PM

“Subtle, Not Subtle: Evocative Nuance” focuses on the delicate complexity of artwork by Marc Civitarese, Janis Pozzi-Johnson, Jonathan Prince, and Helen Shulman.

“Subtle, Not Subtle” focuses on four artists whose work displays a delicate complexity that is easily overlooked by the casual viewer. Marc Civitarese abstracts the elements of realism–shape, form, and light–as a way of showing an introspective exploration of mankind, nature, and spirituality. Janis Pozzi-Johnson paints emotional, earthy tones in thick wax layers to form viscous color fields “as a visual metaphor for the often ineffable experiences of the human heart.” Working in oil and cold wax, Helen Schulman crafts paintings that engage the viewer in a quiet conversation about color and surface texture. These loose, gestural, and expressive paintings contain an undercurrent of spirituality and strong emotional overtones. Jonathan Prince’s steel sculptures contain some element that is torn or broken. These infractions are gloriously polished to reveal the tension of imperfection. Together, these artists invite the viewer to join them in the act of contemplation and to explore nuance and subtlety in artwork. These artists reward the viewer with a powerful experience; emotional earthquakes that are anything but subtle.

The exhibition is part of West Branch Gallery & Sculpture Park’s expanded exhibition program in 2015. The new program features a series of exhibitions that allow for a deeper reflection and interpretation of gallery artists and sculptors. “Subtle, Not Subtle” is curated by Ric Kasini Kadour and West Branch partner Tari Swenson.

Jonathan Prince at Art Central Hong Kong

Jonathan Prince will exhibit works from both the Liquid State series and the Torn Steel series with Cynthia Reeves Gallery at the upcoming Art Central art fair, in conjunction with Art Basel Hong Kong, opening March 14. 

Art Central is Hong Kong's exciting new art fair, showcasing the next generation of talent alongside some of the most established contemporary galleries and art spaces from across the globe. Launched by the founders of ART HK, Art Central debuts 14-16 March 2015 (VIP Preview 13 March 2015) to coincide with Art Basel's Hong Kong edition. 

High Chromium Stainless Steel 
18 x 44 x 44 inches | 46 x 112 x 112 cm



Jonathan Prince at Art Miami

We are pleased to announce that Jonathan Prince will show two works from his ongoing series entitled Liquid State with Cynthia Reeves Gallery at the Art Miami Pavilion during Art Basel this week.

Liquid State (Exhale)
Mirror Polished High Chromium Stainless Steel
22 x 22 x 22 inches | 56 x 56 x 56 cm
Edition of 5 + 1 AP

About Liquid State:

Jonathan Prince is in the process of developing an extended conversation around geometric forms morphed and softened through the applied will of the artist.  This new series of stainless steel sculptures is a manipulation of straight line and flat plane that gives rise to unexpectedly organic objects, despite their distinct origins as cube or sphere.  Each has been reduced from its initial, complete form, setting up an ironic tension in the work.

Prince recently commented: “A solitary object may be too limiting to fully investigate or communicate the complete story. I have been designing installations of object groupings that can fill a space and envelope the viewer in a type of environmental theatre -- one that allows the visual stimulus to extend past the solitary object and become more of a visceral experience.  The installation allows for the echoing, and rhythm of expression, of an idea to its fullest extent: a visual poem, so to speak, beyond single object.”

Liquid State (Inhale)
Mirror Polished High Chromium Stainless Steel
22 x 22 x 22 inches | 56 x 56 x 56 cm
Edition of 5 + 1 AP

In this extensive inquiry into form, and departure from form, he is challenging the ‘will’ of the steel. Fabricated by hand in heavy guage stainless steel, Prince’s objective is to bend the assumed line of cube or sphere to realize a new shape.  The molten surfaces, where only the barest vestiges of ‘cube’ or ‘sphere’ remain, creates a new order of light reflections and thus an entirely different relationship between sculpture and environment.  Light plays on these surfaces in a way that activates both the space and its surround.   The “cube” is no longer dormant, but has the potential for a dynamic dialog with light and space.

The current work, Liquid State, is a natural extrapolation of the Torn Steel inquiry. In lieu of tearing, he is now disrupting the pure form through molding, forming, and contouring.  The resulting undulating surfaces are counter-intuitive, given the inherent rigidity of the material – especially given the thickness of steel he employs.

In a recent essay, art critic Dorothy Joiner commented:  “One of Plato’s favorite sayings is:  God is always doing geometry.  Classic forms bear historical and symbolic associations… yet it would seem that Prince has spoiled Plato’s divinely perfect geometric forms.  He prefers a marriage of form and accident, or form and intentional morphing of form into something decidedly non-geometric.”   

Jonathan Prince has exhibited his sculptures at the Cynthia-Reeves gallery in New York City; and has had a series of important, recent public art installations in New York, including TORN STEEL at the 590 Madison Avenue Sculpture Garden; an installation at the 535 Madison Avenue Sculpture Plaza; an exhibition of G2V at Dag Hammarskjold Plaza at the United Nations; and, an exhibition of two black granite sculptures on Pier 64 at Hudson River Park.  One of these sculptures will travel for a two-year installation in San Diego, California; and an installation of his seminal work, Ellipsis, will be on view at the Whitehead Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, next year.

Jonathan Prince’s Vestigial Block is on permanent view at the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University in East Lansing. The monumentally scaled sculpture is one of three currently on display as part of the museum’s Sculpture Garden, surrounding the new Zaha Hadid designed museum.

For more information on the series and the artist’s practice, please call 212 714 0044, or visit the online gallery at:

ART MIAMI  December 2-7, 2014  Booth A40.


Exhibition in New York City

Jonathan Prince at Sculpture Garden in New York City by Edward Rubin of Artes Magazine

The work of Massachusetts-based artist, Jonathan Prince, is currently on view until November 18th, at the Sculpture Garden in the atrium of the old IBM building, in New York City. Shown under the title Torn Steel, the work like the artist, himself, who resembles Julian Schnabel—is big, bold and undeniably ambitious. But underneath the swagger of the man and his work— observations based on an in-depth studio visit, a couple of wide-ranging conversations of the inquiring kind and, of course, the four, eye- to-mind grabbing sculptures on view—lives a sensitive soul, albeit on top of a simmering volcano. His innards seem to house an acute and restless intellect that appears to know no bounds. Though relatively new, as a full-time practitioner to the art world, that is, Prince has only been sculpting 24/7 for the past eight years, a somewhat unbelievable fact given the sure-footedness of his work. As a young boy he was drafted into the world of art through a series of visits with his father to the studio of artist, Jacques Lipchitz. It was here that he was first exposed to contemporary art, to Lipchitz’s extensive collection of pre-Columbian sculpture, and where he experienced, first hand— with a few demonstrations by the master himself—what it meant to be an artist.

Vestigial BlockCorTen and Stainless Steel / 6.25 x 6 x 6 feet | 1.9 x 1.8 x 1.8 meter

As a teenager, still smitten with the lessons of Lipchitz, Prince turned both hands to sculpting in stone and clay, as well as plaster. As fate would have it—like a good son who would follow in his father’s footsteps—his career trajectory led him to the art of dentistry and maxillofacial surgery. After three years in this highly precise eye-to-hand occupation, Prince turned to directing and producing films and computer animated special-effects projects. After successfully pursuing the art and science of filmmaking for a number of decades, he returned (an argument could be made that he never left) to his first love, sculpting. In Torn Steel, his newest series, Prince, known primarily for his work in black granite, stone, and marble, each harboring traces of Noguchi, Brancusi and Arp, uses steel, oxidized and stainless steel to implement his vision. “Steel is less tight than stone. It gives me the opportunity to cut something or to weld it back,” he told one interviewer. “What I’m hoping to create is the intersection between chaos theory and refined geometry.” True to his word, the artist’s four geometrically-shaped works in Torn Steel, set down among the Sculpture Center
atrium’s elegant stand of bamboo trees—the cellular softness of nature embracing
our industrial civilization—does just that.

At first glance, Prince’s monumental sculptures appear to be nothing more than simple geometric forms: a square with a broken edge: a column with its top gouged; a couple of circular sculptural riffs, one resembling a large distressed pill set on edge, the other a partially eaten donut doing a clever balancing act. On closer examination, the lively quartette begins to take on an otherworldly, if not quasireligious, cast. Refraining from the impulse to begin praying, we ask ourselves: are these objects relics of worship from a lost civilization; artifacts left behind by a race that has died off; a Hollywood studio prop leftover from a long-forgotten Roman epic; or are they really post-modern sculptures waiting to be transported to some city plaza? 

Totem II Oxidized and Stainless Steel / 12.5 x 2 x 2 feet | 3.8 x .6 x .6 meter

Each sculpture, though massive in appearance is, in actuality, deceptively hollow. The naturally-oxidized appearance that weathered steel effortlessly acquires is, in the case of Prince’s work, a labor-intensive process that is anything but random. It all begins with Prince sketching out a concept. After refining it on computer, he creates a urethane foam model, along with a series of engineering drawings, enabling him to order the necessary materials for fabrication. Once the full geometrically shaped work is constructed, the artist marks the sections to be
“torn” out of the sculpture with a powerful plasma torch. Then the stainless steel plates are shaped, welded into the form, the patterns are overlaid onto the plates with a MIG welder in stainless steel, and all areas smoothed and blended with a TIG welder. Finally, the stainless steel areas are smoothed and polished with various abrasives.

The most satisfying and easily digestible of the four sculptures on view—also the most challenging in its simplicity—is Vestigial Block, Prince’s six-foot square cube. It is here at the steel cubiform, unfettered and uncomplicated by the edgy and visually jagged cuts and molten steel plating found at the top of Totem and at either end of Torus—making them a bit too fussy for my taste—that Prince’s technique of exposing the seemingly soft molten innards buried within the sculpture’s hard outer shell is at its most natural and pleasantly poignant. It is also at this stop, while basking gently in the light of this daringly modest sculpture, that our mind is gently seduced into conjuring up images of the earth’s fiery center, overflowing lava, and thoughts of the human body housing an active soul.