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exhibition: Alex Hay: Work from the 60s

dates: 31 October - 21 December 2002 [later extended to 18 January 2003]

In the 1960s, ALEX HAY made a small body of Pop and Conceptual paintings, drawings, and sculpture that are remarkable for their assured presence and formal originality. While absolutely a part of their time when they were made and shown in the 60s, these works–and the artist–have been all but forgotten, the result of his choice both to leave New York and to stop showing work.

However, Hay was included in the first important survey of Pop Art (in 1968 at the Hayward in London) and in the first standard books on Pop Art (Lucy Lippard's 1966 Pop Art; and John Russell & Suzi Gablik's 1969 Pop Art Redefined).

Alex Hay: Work from the 60s will focus only on Hay's Pop paintings and sculpture, and will be the first one-person Hay exhibition of any sort to take place since 1969.

The exhibition will include paintings and sculptures of common everyday objects, each surprisingly out of scale. Lined legal paper, cash register receipts, toilet paper–all are paintings six to seven feet tall. A paper bag and a paper airplane stand five and seven feet tall, a fork, knife and spoon set beside an egg on a plate are all as high as a gallery wall.

Alex Hay was also a key participant in New York's dance and Happenings scene in the early 60s, performing at the Judson Dance Theater with Trisha Brown, Steve Paxton, Lucinda Childs, and Deborah Hay; and perhaps most famously performing with Robert Rauschenberg in several of Rauschenberg's choreographed events, notably Pelican (1963), Map Room II (1965), and Linoleum (1966), among others.

Hay was also one of several artists to participate in E.A.T. (Experiments in Art and Technology), including the important 1966 9 Evenings: Theater and Engineering, presented at the 69th Regiment Armory on Lexington Avenue at 25th Street.