Anthony Akinbola, Black piece CAMOUFLAGE #005 (Rick James), 2021, durags, acrylic on wood panel, 96" × 96" × 3" (243.8 cm × 243.8 cm × 7.6 cm) © Anthony Akinbola

Convergent Evolutions

In Focus

Pace is pleased to present Convergent Evolutions: In Focus, a digital exhibition featuring a curated selection of online exclusive artworks and works included in the physical iteration of the show at the gallery’s 508-510 West 25th Street space in New York, now on view through October 23.

Convergent Evolutions: The Conscious of Body Work explores how intergenerational artists have used various instruments within their practices to grant or deny viewers the agency of viewership while also surveying the body’s response to the visual plane. Central to the presentation are the artists’ abilities to manipulate the ways that viewers interact with and experience their works. The show takes its title from a scientific term that refers to the development of similar traits in species belonging to different time periods.

Marking the curatorial debut of Pace’s Online Sales Director Christiana Ine-Kimba Boyle, the exhibition brings together emerging and established artists from within and beyond the gallery’s program, featuring works by Anthony Akinbola, Caitlin Cherry, Sam Gilliam, Sonia Gomes, Kylie Manning, RJ Messineo, Chibuike Uzoma, Rachel Eulena Williams, and others.

Two newly minted NFTs derived from Lucas Samaras’s XYZ series, XYZ 0862 (Chinoiserie) and XYZ 0879 (Chinoiserie), figure in this iteration of the In Focus online viewing room series. The unveiling of these works, which are the first of their kind by Samaras, consists of a digital component and an 11x17 inch physical print. The works are dated 2012/2021 to reflect their original format and later transformation into NFTs. Ownership of each XYZ NFT 1:1 edition will whitelist holders for the second Samaras NFT drop on Pace’s dedicated NFT platform later this fall.

Online Exhibition Details

Convergent Evolutions: In Focus
Sep 15 – Oct 23, 2021

Exhibition Details

Convergent Evolutions: The Conscious of Body Work
Sep 10 – Oct 23, 2021

Featured Artists

Lucas Samaras
Caitlin Cherry
RJ Messineo
Sam Gilliam
Sonia Gomes
Rachel Eulena Williams
Richard Pousette-Dart
Anthony Akinbola
Kylie Manning
Chibuike Uzoma

Lucas Samaras

b. 1936, Kastoria, Macedonia, Greece
Lives and works in New York

Lucas Samaras has produced an expansive body of work across media and discipline—including photography, painting, installation, assemblage, drawing, and sculpture—united by a focus on the body and psyche, and often emphasizing autobiography.

Lucas Samaras, XYZ 0879 (Chinoiserie), 2012/2021, non-fungible token (NFT); physical component: 11" x 17," print with exclusive QR code watermark, Edition 1 of 1
Lucas Samaras, XYZ 0862 (Chinoiserie), 2012/2021, still image delivered as a non-fungible token, accompanied by an archival pigment print 8-1/2" × 14" (21.6 cm × 35.6 cm), sheet 7" × 12-1/2" (17.8 cm × 31.8 cm), image 9-1/4" × 14-3/4" × 1-1/2" (23.5 cm × 37.5 cm × 3.8 cm), framed
Lucas Samaras, Serpent Green Reclining Nude, November 3, 1984, Polaroid Polacolor II assemblage, 13-7/8" x 42-1/8" (35.2 cm x 107 cm)

Caitlin Cherry

b. 1987, Chicago, Illinois
Lives and works in Richmond, Virginia

Caitlin Cherry, Quaternion, 2021, oil on canvas and aluminum, 4' 10" × 8' 6" × 6' (147.3 cm × 259.1 cm × 182.9 cm)

Caitlin Cherry’s multifaceted practice is comprised of painting, sculpture, and installation coalescing into articulate and alluring representations of Black femininity. Filtering these media through layers of digital manipulation, her work explores parallels between Black femme bodies, frequently commodified and positioned as sexual assets, and the seductiveness of art objects in the commercial gallery circuit. Cherry is currently Assistant Professor of Painting and Printmaking at Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, and the founder of the new online program Dark Study, a contra-institutional space for radical learning about art and theory. Her paintings have been exhibited at The Bronx Museum of the Arts, Brooklyn Museum, Performance Space, and The Studio Museum in Harlem in New York, among other notable institutions. She is a recipient of a Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Fellowship Residency and Leonore Annenberg Fellowship.

RJ Messineo

b. 1980, West Hartford, Connecticut
Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York

RJ Messineo’s work centers around observation and abstraction. Concerned with experiences living in and moving through public and interior spaces, the artist’s works implicate the body and reference landscape, the street, windows, beds, and blankets. Messineo engages a wide, and sometimes incongruous range of scale relationships, mark-making, and compositional structures to make the paintings, from expressionist gesture, to process-based systems and chance encounters. Many of the large paintings incorporate sheets of plywood adhered to the surface of the canvas, often extending beyond the rectangular picture plane to create idiosyncratic shapes. The rigid elements allow Messineo to push the application and texture of the oil paint—thick, impasto sections are scraped onto the surface or carved into, scribbling marks fade into shifting moments of washy, brushed-on color.

RJ Messineo, Red, Red, 2021, oil on panel, 20" × 16" (50.8 cm × 40.6 cm)
RJ Messineo, Notes for Trees, 2021, oil on panel, 20" × 16" (50.8 cm × 40.6 cm)

Sam Gilliam

b. 1933, Tupelo, Mississippi
Lives and works in Washington, D.C.

Sam Gilliam is one of the great innovators in postwar American painting. He emerged from the Washington, D.C. scene in the mid-1960s with works that elaborated upon and disrupted the ethos of Color School painting.

Sam Gilliam, Color Abacus, 2020, wood, aluminum, die-stain, lacquer, 12" × 22" × 5" (30.5 cm × 55.9 cm × 12.7 cm)

Gilliam grew up in Louisville, Kentucky, attending the University of Louisville for both undergraduate and graduate school. In addition to a traveling retrospective organized by the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. in 2005, and installation at the Central Pavilion of the 57th Venice Biennale, Gilliam has been the subject of solo exhibitions at The Museum of Modern Art, New York (1971); The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York (1982); Whitney Museum of American Art, Philip Morris Branch, New York (1993); J.B. Speed Memorial Museum, Louisville, Kentucky (1996); Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C. (2011); and Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland (2018), among many other institutions. A semi-permanent installation of Gilliam’s paintings opened at Dia:Beacon in August 2019. His work is included in over 50 public collections, including those of the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Tate Modern, London; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and the Art Institute of Chicago.

Sonia Gomes, Sem título [Untitled], 2004, stitching, bindings, different fabrics and threads on bench, 20-1/8" × 9-7/8" × 10-1/4" (51.1 cm × 25.1 cm × 26 cm)

Sonia Gomes

b. 1948, Caetanópolis, Brasil
Lives and Works in São Paulo, Brasil

Sonia Gomes combines secondhand textiles with everyday materials, such as furniture, driftwood, and wire, to create abstract sculptures that reclaim Afro-Brazilian traditions and feminized crafts from the margins of history. 

Rachel Eulena Williams, Weighted Quilt, 2021, acrylic paint and dye on canvas, wood panel, hammock and cotton rope, 65" × 77" × 5" (165.1 cm × 195.6 cm × 12.7 cm)

Rachel Eulena Williams

b. 1991, Miami, Florida
Lives and works in New York

Rachel Eulena Williams's work displays an unusual level of candor, invention, and lightness. Exuding confidence and pleasure, her painted constructions employ the language of abstract painting, but are transformed through her distinct approach to material. Finding a balance between painting and sculpture, Williams incorporates large swaths of color made from painted canvases and subsequently cuts them up and reconfigures. The collage-like quality is tied together with sewing, which acts both functionally and creates marks within her compositions. Williams also adds ropes of various lengths and thickness to the works, becoming stand-in gestural marks. The overall feeling is of solidity and lightness, structure and wild chances, jostling to create waves of energy.

Rachel Eulena Williams, Systems, 2021, acrylic paint and dye on canvas, panel, and cotton rope, 73" × 133" × 4" (185.4 cm × 337.8 cm × 10.2 cm)
Richard Pousette-Dart, Presence Number 3, Black, 1969, oil on linen, 80" x 80" (203.2 cm x 203.2 cm)

Richard Pousette-Dart

b. 1916, Saint Paul, Minnesota
d. 1992, New York

Richard Pousette-Dart was the youngest artist of the New York School’s first generation of Abstract Expressionists. During his career, Pousette-Dart created a lexicon of biomorphic and totemic forms that provided rich visual and symbolic sources that he would explore throughout his long career in a multitude of painterly approaches. He is recognized for his painting, drawing, photography, and sculpture, which are unified by his expressive use of gesture, form, and color. Never embracing action painting and instead pursuing his own aesthetic, Pousette-Dart sought universal significance in his art, expressed through nonobjective means.

Pousette-Dart’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art (1963, 1974, 1998); Museum of Modern Art (1969); The Metropolitan Museum of Art (1997); and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum as well as the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy (2007). Recent monographic presentations have been held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (2014); The Drawing Center, New York (2015); Kettle’s Yard, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom (2018); and Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, Maine (2018)

Anthony Olubunmi Akinbola, Black piece CAMOUFLAGE #005 (Rick James), 2021, durags, acrylic on wood panel, 9' 11" × 8' 5" × 3" (302.3 cm × 256.5 cm × 7.6 cm)

Anthony Olubunmi Akinbola

b. 1991, Columbia, Missouri
Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York

Anthony Olubunmi Akinbola is a first-generation American raised between Missouri and Nigeria. Foregoing conventional approaches to painting and sculpture, Akinbola reimagines identity construction through startling original treatments of color and texture. His self-developed techniques explore the possibilities of totemic materials such as palm oil, hair brushes, and durags—fiber scarves used in maintaining Black hair. Akinbola has characterized his works as “metaphors for what a first-generation existence might look like,” and unpacks the rituals and histories separating Africa from Black America. His multifaceted compositions celebrate and reconcile diverse cultural narratives, creating multilayered artworks engaging consumption, respectability, and the commodification of Black culture.

Akinbola was selected for the Anderson Ranch Art Center Residency in 2017, awarded the Van Lier Fellowship in 2019, and an artist-in-residence at Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna, in 2020. He has been featured in exhibitions at The Queens Museum, New York; the Verbeke Foundation, Stekene, Belgium; and The Zuckerman Museum of Art, Kennesaw, Georgia, among others. Following his recent show at the Museum of Arts and Design, New York, in 2020, Akinbola mounted significant solo exhibitions in early 2021 at FALSE FLAG, New York; the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, Wisconsin; and Night Gallery, Los Angeles, California.

Kylie Manning

b. 1983, Juneau, Alaska
Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York

Kylie Manning, Clove hitch, 2021, oil on linen, 64" × 86" (162.6 cm × 218.4 cm)
Kylie Manning, Dog Days, 2021, oil on linen, 60" × 84" (152.4 cm × 213.4 cm)

Kylie Manning is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts Summa Cum Laude with a double major in Philosophy and Visual Arts. While earning a Masters from the New York Academy of Art, Manning was sent to Leipzig, Germany to exhibit and study alongside the New Leipzig School. Her training in Germany exposed her to the New Leipzig School’s version of Surrealism whose narratives she toys within her paintings. Using pure pigments dispersed with safflower and walnut oil on Belgian linen, Manning creates a whirlwind of thinly layered oil sketches that simultaneously imply and deny a narrative. Manning imbues her compositions with a feminist perspective, recontextualizing the macabre aftermath of traditionally gendered “masterpieces.”

Chibụike Ụzọma

b. 1992, Port Harcourt, Nigeria
Lives and works in New Haven, Connecticut

Chibụike Ụzọma received his BFA from the University of Benin, Nigeria in 2013, and an MFA from Yale University School of Art, New Haven, in 2021. Chibụike is a multidisciplinary artist working with painting, photography, drawing, texts, and video. By treating art as a subject-object in and of itself, Chibụike’s practice engenders the image with the complexes of narratives and the superstitions of meaning—making the subject matter a pretext for performance, and context, a fluid ground. Chibụike has been invited to participate in projects, exhibitions, and residencies by institutions in Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America.

Chibuike Uzoma, Good For Us, 2021, oil and acrylic spray paint on canvas, 72-1/8" × 61-3/4" (183.2 cm × 156.8 cm)
Chibuike Uzoma, The Surge Of A Poem (2), 2021, oil and acrylic spray paint on canvas, 84-1/4" × 60-1/4" (214 cm × 153 cm)
To inquire about any of the works or artists in this exhibition, please email us at inquiries@pacegallery.com.
  • Past, Convergent Evolutions, In Focus, Sep 15, 2021