Al Taylor

Work

Text

The American artist Al Taylor, who was born in 1948 in Springfield, Missouri, studied at the Kansas City Art Institute from 1966 to 1970. Directly after graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting and printmaking, he moved to New York, where he lived and worked until his premature death in 1999. A long and intensive collaboration with Galerie Fred Jahn began in 1991 and signified a turning point in his career, as the artist himself noted. Taylor’s first museum exhibition took place in the Kunsthalle Bern in 1992. Works by the artist can be found in the collections of prestigious museums such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, the British Museum, London, and the Staatliche Graphische Sammlung in Munich.

Al Taylor, who was Robert Rauschenberg’s studio assistant from 1975 to 1982, repeatedly worked with the dancer and choreographer Meg Eginton in the mid eighties. While designing sets for her, he created his first object-like, three-dimensional works. These were to become – alongside the drawings – particularly meaningful to him and would often be made ‘on site’. For instance, Taylor travelled to Munich in April 1994 in order to prepare for his exhibition at Galerie Fred Jahn, which would open in May. The installation that was then shown at Galerie Fred Jahn on Baaderstraße consisted of drawings and three-dimensional objects made of tin cans, Plexiglas, wood and wire.

His constructions, made of everyday materials and things from a throw-away society, appear playfully light and fragile yet at the same time exude a remarkable presence. Hoses, tin cans, clothes hangers, hula-hoops etc., tightly wound with wire, mounted on walls and ceilings, develop a kaleidoscopic interplay of line and space, light and dark, near and far, visible presence and the loss of self. Taylor understood his objects as “drawings in space” and his drawings as works dealing with the same theme using different means – so as to insistently plumb the depths of the visual.

Vita

1948

Al Taylor is born on March 2 in Springfield, Missouri

1966—1970

Studies art history, painting, drawing and graphic printing techniques at the Kansas City Art Institute

After that move to New York City

1975

Becomes studio assistent of Robert Rauschenberg and works for him until 1982

1984—1985

Colaborates with the choreographer and dancer Meg Eginton and designs various stage sets for her

1988

National Endowment for the Arts Individual Fellowship Grant in the field of sculpture

1991

Meets Fred Jahn in his New York studio on Franklin Street, who will represent and exhibit him in the future

First trip to Munich

1994

Starts the work on the series ‘Lily’s Trap’

1998

Intensive work phase in New York; the series ‘Rat Guards’, ‘Wave Theories’, ‘Floaters’, ‘Counting with Outriggers’ and ‘Bondage Ducks’ are created

1999

Al Taylor dies in New York on March 31

Selected Solo Shows

2017

Al Taylor. Early Paintings – David Zwirner, New York

Al Taylor. What are you looking at – High Museum of Art, Atlanta

2015

Al Taylor. Pet Stains, Puddles, and Full Gospel Neckless – David Zwirner, New York

Al Taylor. Pass the Peas and Shrunken Heads – Galería Cayón, Madrid

2014

Al Taylor, David Zwirner, London

Al Taylor. Arbeiten auf Papier 1983–1997 – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

2013

Drawing Instruments. Al Taylor’s Bat Parts and Endcuts – High Museum of Art, Atlanta

2012

Al Taylor. Pass the Peas and Can Studys – David Zwirner, New York

2011

Al Taylor. Wire Instruments and Pet Stains – Santa Monica Museum of Art, Santa Monica

2010

Al Taylor. Latin Studies. Wall Constructions and Works on Paper – Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Portland

Al Taylor. Arbeiten auf Papier / Works on Paper 1983–1998 – Schönewald Fine Arts, Düsseldorf

Al Taylor. Rim Jobs and Sideffects – David Zwirner, New York

Al Taylor. Das druckgraphische Werk – Staatliche Graphische Sammlung München, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich; Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark

2009

Al Taylor. München. Can Studies – Kunstverein Bremerhaven, Bremerhaven

2008

Al Taylor. Early Work – Zwirner & Wirth, New York

2006

Al Taylor. Puddles – Haunch of Venison, Zurich

Al Taylor. Drawings / Zeichnungen – Staatliche Graphische Sammlung München, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich

Al Taylor – Haunch of Venison, London

2004

Al Taylor. Zeichnungen und Aquarelle 1997–1999 – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

Al Taylor. Bilder und Skulpturen – Kunstparterre, Munich

2002

Al Taylor – Gagosian Gallery, New York

2001

Al Taylor. Ho’omanamana. Zeichnungen 1998 und 1999 – Galerie Zell am See, Schloss Rosenberg, Zell am See, Austria

1999

Al Taylor. Memorial Exhibition. Arbeiten auf Papier 1987–1997 – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

Al Taylor. Lures & Cures – Kunstmuseum Luzern, Luzern

1998

Al Taylor. Arbeiten auf Papier 1987–1997 – Galerie Zell am See, Schloss Rosenberg, Zell am See, Austria

1997

Al Taylor. Endcuts – Skulpturen und Zeichnungen – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

Al Taylor. Full Gospel Neckless – Galleri Tommy Lund, Odense, Denmark

1997

Peter Bonde, Olafur Eliasson, Al Taylor, Alan Uglow, Troels Wörsel – Galleri Tommy Lund, Odense, Denmark

1996

Al Taylor. Sideffects / Näbewürkig – Galerie Erika & Otto Friedrich, Bern

1995

Al Taylor. Temporary Observations – Nolan / Eckman Gallery, New York

Al Taylor. Lily’s Trap – Galerie Zell am See, Schloss Rosenberg, Zell am See, Austria

Al Taylor. Rim Jobs – Galleri Tommy Lund, Odense, Denmark

1994

Al Taylor. Zeichnungen 1984–1994 – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

Al Taylor. Installation – Galerie Fred Jahn / Baaderstraße, Munich

Al Taylor. Skulpturen und Zeichnungen – Galerie Fred Jahn, Stuttgart

1993

Al Taylor. Drawings of Common Objects – Nolan / Eckman Gallery, New York

1992

Al Taylor. Puddles – David Nolan Gallery, New York

Al Taylor. Pass the Peas – Galerie Jahn und Fusban, Munich

Al Taylor – Kunsthalle Bern, Bern

1991

Al Taylor. Large Drawings – Galerie Alfred Kren, Cologne

1989

Al Taylor. Pet Stains. Neue Arbeiten / New Work – Galerie Alfred Kren, Cologne

1988

Al Taylor – Lorence-Monk Gallery, New York

1987

Al Taylor – Neue Arbeiten, Galerie Alfred Kren, Cologne

1986

Al Taylor. Recent Work – Alfred Kren Gallery, New York

Selected Group Shows

2017

PLAN VIEW – Jahn und Jahn, München

2016

Architecture of Life – University of California, Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive Berkeley

2015

Embracing Modernism. Ten Years of Drawings Acquisitions – The Morgan Library & Museum, New York

2013

Bildhauerzeichnungen. Barry Le Va / Fred Sandback / Al Taylor – Galerie Fred Jahn, Munich

Die Sammlung Hubert Looser – Kunsthaus Zürich, Zurich

2012

Pink Caviar – Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebæk, Denmark

2009

Die Gegenwart der Linie. Eine Bestandsauswahl neuerer Erwerbungen des 20. und 21. Jahrhunderts – Staatliche Graphische Sammlung München, Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich

2005

Sets, Series, and Suites. Contemporary Prints – Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Skulls. Bilder im Angesicht des Todes / Images in the Face of Death – Schönewald Fine Arts / Schönewald und Beuse, Xanten, Germany

Brice Marden / Al Taylor / Terry Winters. Works on Paper – Nolan / Eckman Gallery, New York

1994

Al Taylor / Alan Uglow – Galleri Tommy Lund, Odense, Denmark

Kirsten Ortwed / Al Taylor / Alan Uglow / Troels Wörsel – Galleri Tommy Lund, Odense, Denmark

1993

The Second Dimension. Twentieth-Century Sculptors’ Drawings – The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York

1990

Three Portfolios. Brice Marden, Al Taylor, Richard Tuttle – Galerie Alfred Kren, Cologne

1989

Projects & Portfolios. The 25th National Print Exhibition – The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York

1986

Artists for Artists – Charles Cowles Gallery / Annex, New York

1985

Drawings by Roni Horn, Michael Peglau, Al Taylor – Alfred Kren Gallery, New York