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Selected Projects

How to Operate in a Dark Room

The Ladder Maker

The Patient Eye (performance)

The Patient Eye (exhibition)

The Invert

Some Were Caught Up...

NADA nyc

People-like Shapes,

A Crisis in the Life...

abc berlin

Cordoned Area

Self-Portrait as My Mother

Movements for Monoliths

L blue N black I green...

Stranger Suite


Oltre l'oblio

The Painter of the Hole

Obstructed View

The Long Glance

With One Hand Between Us

Keystone Color Works

The Hole in the Palm of Your Hand

The Invert

Tops Gallery, Memphis

April–June 2017

With an opening performance featuring Terri Lynn Phillips

Tops Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of works by Jonathan VanDyke, the New York-based artist’s first showing in Memphis. In his paintings, sculptures, photographs, and performance, the idea of what a painting might be is reoriented and pushed into unforeseen directions. Each work is the result of intensive research and material processes developed over a decade.

The title The Invert recalls Freud’s term for a homosexual, a now archaic reference that persisted into the 1960’s. Referring to homosexuals as “inverts” signaled that their desire was bent or literally turned over, and contributed to the idea that their bodies could be righted, or fixed, if only they were “straightened out.” In VanDyke’s work, displacement and inversion is a given: the work and the body are oriented so as to discover new possibilities for process and encounter.

For the piece Self Portrait as My Mother, as an Actress, as a Painter, as a Stranger, presented here in a new iteration, a performer shows up at the opening with paint dripping from her purse. The paint stains her dress and slowly trickles through a manhole at street level and into Tops’ below-ground space, leaving behind a trail of color on the gallery walls and floor.

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