April 12 – Ed Askew: Brief Visits and Close Calls, Exhibition Opening w/ Ed Askew Band


Musician and artist Ed Askew is well known to fans of outsider folk music, who have been enchanted by the stark and memorable songs he has chronicled in records for labels like ESP, De Stijl and Drag City, and in recent tours with the Ed Askew band. He is perhaps less well known for his wide ranging painting career and his thirty + years as a resident of Washington Heights. Word Up: Community Bookshop – Libreria Comunitaria is proud to present his first solo exhibition of paintings in NYC in three decades. To celebrate, the Ed Askew Band graces our stage for the opening on April 12, 3-5pm.

The exhibition, a series of 10″x10″ abstract paintings, runs April 11-May 7. Below is a statement by the artist.



early 2006 i made a painting called SATIN, where i combined overlapping lines and rectangles. this was the first in a series of maybe 35 pictures that took me through much of 2012. in that year i ordered a bunch of 10”x10’ canvases, and started a new series called CROSSING LINES. these were simple overlapping, vertical and horizontal (somewhat brushy) lines. while working on the the new series i had covered a canvas in silver.
following an impulse , i made two horizontal slashes of red and green across the silver ground. realizing that this picture did not need the vertical lines. i decided i had a “finished” work. i had a sort of mini art-crisis. like the boy who has to decided what door to open, in the story. CROSSING LINES OR what?

the new paintings would be called BRIEF VISITS AND CLOSE CALLS, and i would make tons of them through 2013.
these are beef encounters, as it were. with almost no thought before hand.
if something doesn’t work out i would paint another one over it, witch i, by some miracle, almost never had to do.
these are true improvisations, i think; combining painterly, and hard- edge impulses.

ed, 1/28/15

Ed Askew: Brief Visits and Close Calls, Exhibition Opening w/ Ed Askew Band
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria.
113 Amsterdam ave, (at 165 st)
New York, NY


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