Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems - Lévy Gorvy
  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

  • Installation view of Eleanore Mikus at Levy Gorvy New York

    Installation view, Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, Lévy Gorvy New York, 2021. Photos: Matthew Herrmann

Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless PoemsExhibitions

New York
March 18 - June 5, 2021

 

#VoicelessPoems

Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems

Beginning March 18, Lévy Gorvy will present Eleanore Mikus: Voiceless Poems, featuring the late artist’s seminal Tablet and Paperfold series. These two bodies of work, along with the innovative neo-expressionist paintings she initiated in the late 1960s, illuminate an experimental practice defined by Eleanore Mikus’s talent for fusing meticulously developed structures together to create artworks that hover between painting and sculpted relief. Meditative in nature, the works on view reveal Mikus’s skill at balancing opposing forces—stillness and action, chance and control—to achieve quietly sublime effects.

Born in Detroit in 1927, Mikus earned a Master’s degree in art history at the University of Denver, where she discovered and embraced lessons within the work of Wang Wei, a painter and poet active during the Tang dynasty who introduced monochrome painting to Chinese art. Mikus’s study of Eastern artistic traditions led her to understand paintings as “voiceless poems”—a synthesis that inspired the title of Lévy Gorvy’s exhibition. Painting in the Abstract Expressionist style in the 1950s, Mikus moved to New York City in 1960, joining the Art Students League and settling into a Lower East Side studio. She made her first Tablet works in 1961, exhibiting two the same year at the Whitney Museum of American Art. There, her art captured the attention of Ad Reinhardt, who initiated a friendship that lasted until his death in 1967. Presented at the Pace Gallery first in Boston and then New York, Mikus’s Tablets quickly gained wider attention, leading to acquisitions by major museums, including the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

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Selected Works

  • ELEANORE MIKUS
    Jupiter
    2002
    Ink on handfolded paper
    28 x 40 inches (71.1 x 101.6 cm)
    © The Eleanore Mikus Estate

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  • ELEANORE MIKUS
    Tablet 1
    1961
    Oil on grooved plywood
    42 x 42 inches (106.7 x 106.7 cm)
    © The Eleanore Mikus Estate

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  • ELEANORE MIKUS
    Tablet 113
    1968
    epoxy on wood
    25 x 19 1/2 inches (63.5 x 49.5 cm)
    © The Eleanore Mikus Estate

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  • ELEANORE MIKUS
    Untitled
    1968
    Handfolded inomache nacre vellum 11 1/2 x 11 1/2
    inches (29.2 x 29.2 cm)
    © The Eleanore Mikus Estate

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  • ELEANORE MIKUS
    Untitled
    1997
    Ink and acrylic on folded paper
    6 x 4 1/2 inches (15.2 x 11.4 cm)
    Framed Dimensions: 13 x 11 5/8 x 7/8 inches (33 x 29.5 x 2.2 cm)
    © The Eleanore Mikus Estate

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Selected Press

BLAKE GOPNIK on art | AT LEVY GORVY, ELEANORE MIKUS LAYS DOWN A CHALLENGE TO HIERARCHY

June 1, 2021

THE DAILY PIC is “Tablet 1,” a 1961 work by Eleanore Mikus (1927–2017) that I saw in her current …

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