Robert Harms, Dahlias, 2023, Oil on canvas, 40 x 30 in.

April 19 – May 31, 2024

Robert Harms: Quatre Saisons

Opening Reception: Friday, April 19, 5–7pm

Contemporary Art Matters is delighted to present ‘Robert Harms: Quatre Saisons’, a solo exhibition featuring new abstract paintings made over the past year. The title translates from the French to 4 seasons, referring to the light and natural surroundings of his home studio on Little Fresh Pond in Southampton, NY. The exhibition will open with a reception on Friday, April 19, 5-7 pm and will be on view through May 31, 2024.

In the exhibition

Installation views

As a young artist in 1980, Harms traveled several times to France, where he stayed with his friend, the renowned abstract painter Joan Mitchell. They both shared a love for nature, fields, flowers, poetry and had mutual friends, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art curator Henry Geldzahler. Harms, like Mitchell, is known for his gestural style of Abstract Expressionism. “Robert Harms’ lyrical abstract paintings are almost embarrassingly beautiful,” wrote Justin Spring in a review in Artforum. Harms was then making paintings inspired by the Hamptons landscape, and continues on the same path today. His studio is modest in scale, but makes up for it in location as it sits on the edge of Little Fresh Pond. The seasons unfold right before him on a daily basis.

Benjamin Gennocchio said in the New York Times, “I’ll admit that the thought of spending a year painting by a pond in Southampton fills me with jealousy; I can think of nothing better. But the reality of doing so is rather more difficult, for it demands not just a reliance on intense observation of nature but an extreme sensitivity to subtle, often fleeting atmospheric effects. This is an issue of artistic temperament as much as talent.” Patience and a quiet confidence are required to see and hear the world outside. His paintings have been admired and supported by important critics and curators, as there is no denying the beauty and power masterfully conveyed on canvas. These works offer the same elegant and sophisticated approach of the artist.

Winter Branches is a painting rendered in warm tones with white highlights and blue undertones. The light mark-making approach reveals the artist’s process of looking, contemplating and translating the air, trees and lake from outside his studio window. One can feel the temperature and energy of the season. Similarly, Grasses with its golden strokes and thin drips of browns and grays, captures the summer warmth and unspoiled natural grasses.

White Hydrangeas is fresh and bright with its light palette of whites, greens, pinks and blues, referring to the iconic flowering bushes ubiquitous in the Hamptons. Dahlias is exuberant with its gestures of orange and green dancing across the surface. These flower titled paintings bring us close up so that we can almost smell them.

Robert Harms is a painter based in Southampton, New York. Originally from New York, Harms received his B.A. from the School of Visual Arts in NYC. His work has been widely exhibited in the U.S. and is in numerous public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Parrish Museum, Southampton, and Guild Hall, Buffalo, New York. He has been the recipient of several awards and grants including the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. In 2021, Robert exhibited a solo show at Contemporary Art Matters, Many Flowers. In 2022, Harms had a solo exhibition Robert Harms: Paintings at the Madoo Conservancy in Long Island, New York.


The gallery is open by appointment only.

Please contact Rebecca Ibel or Cathy Williard at: [email protected] or call us at 614-313-4360.

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