The Kreeger Museum Presents Charles Hinman: Structures, 1965-2014

By Editorial Team on April 16, 2019
Charles Hinman, Sails, 1965, Acrylic on shaped canvas, 34 x 36 x 6 1/2 inches, The Kreeger Museum, Washington, DC.
On view April 18 to July 31, 2019.

The Kreeger Museum presents Charles Hinman: Structures, 1965-2014, opening April 18, 2019. Charles Hinman is a New York-based abstract painter who pioneered three-dimensional, shaped canvases starting in the 1960s. This is the first museum show of works by Hinman in the Washington area and the first survey in more than 30 years. Hinman is best known for his compositions that emerge from the wall in a collection of hand-built and multi-colored planes, expanding the conventional space of the canvas. Guest curated by Danielle O’Steen, the exhibition offers a look at 50 years of the artist’s innovative work.

“We are thrilled to present this exhibition of Charles Hinman’s work from the last five decades,” said Director Helen Chason. “This exhibition provides us the opportunity to reunite Sails, from our permanent collection, with more than thirty of Hinman’s other works, thus giving our audiences an understanding of the context in which David and Carmen Kreeger first experienced the work.”

Charles Hinman: Structures, 1965–2014 brings together historic paintings from the 1960s while also presenting objects that cast a new light on Hinman’s expansive, and ongoing, studio practice. The show includes painted canvases, cast paper reliefs, and other experimental artworks. The exhibition begins with the artist’s early, groundbreaking paintings from the 1960s and 1970s, including Sails, 1965, in The Kreeger Museum collection. The show reunites Sails with three works on loan from the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, as the paintings were all shown in Hinman’s 1965 solo exhibition at the Richard Feigen Gallery in New York. The exhibition then follows Hinman’s career in the subsequent decades, from his monumental and monochromatic paintings to his rarely-exhibited textiles and prints and drawings.

“Hinman broke new ground when he first exhibited his constructed paintings in the 1960s, as he proposed a radical expansion of the boundaries of the canvas,” says curator, Danielle O’Steen. “What followed was 50 years of exploration, represented in this show, as Hinman tirelessly experimented with the relationships between color, abstraction, and the picture plane using a wide variety of surfaces, materials, and processes.”

Hinman first found acclaim for his shaped canvases in the exhibition Seven New Artists at the Sidney Janis gallery in New York in 1964, followed by his debut solo show at the Richard Feigen gallery and inclusion in Shape and Structure, curated by Frank Stella, Henry Geldzhaler, and Barbara Rose at Tibor de Nagy in 1965. Hinman has received numerous awards, notably a grant from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation and a Guggenheim Fellowship. His work is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, among others. This exhibition includes loans from the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Heritage Collection at MGM National Harbor, the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation, and the artist’s collection.

In Conversation: Vesela Sretenović and Danielle O’Steen
Wednesday, May 1, 7pm
Presented in collaboration with The Phillips Collection, Vesela Sretenović and Danielle O’Steen will discuss the history of the shaped canvas in the context of concurrent exhibitions: Zilia Sánchez: Soy Isla (I Am an Island) at The Phillips Collection and Charles Hinman: Structures, 1965–2014 at The Kreeger Museum. Vesela Sretenović is Senior Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Phillips Collection. Danielle O’Steen is Guest Curator for Charles Hinman: Structures, 1965–2014 at The Kreeger Museum. A second program is planned for 12:30pm on May 2 at The Phillips Collection.

The Kreeger Museum is located at 2401 Foxhall Rd. NW.