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Burgoyne Diller: The Third Dimension, Sculpture & Drawings, 1930-1965

November 13, 1997 – January 17, 1998

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Press Release

Burgoyne Diller: The Third Dimension features important sculpture and wall reliefs as well as drawings for three-dimensional works spanning Diller’s entire creative career. Burgoyne Diller is recognized as among the most significant and influential twentieth-century artists devoted to geometric abstraction. As early as the 1930s, he was regarded as a leader of the avant-garde in American art and a forefather of the 1960s minimalist movement.

Upon exploring Burgoyne Diller’s oeuvre, it is apparent that the third dimension was a lifelong obsession which played a significant role in his creative process. Surprisingly, though, the sculptural aspect of Diller’s art has not been sufficiently examined and, as a result, there are misconceptions of Diller as a principally two dimensional artist following in the tradition of Piet Mondrian. This exhibition illustrates Diller’s ongoing preoccupation and extraordinary accomplishments in the realm of sculpture.

During the early 1930s, Burgoyne Diller studied at the Art Students League. In 1934, he was employed as an easel painter by the Public Works of Arts Project (PWAP). In 1935, he was appointed Director of the New York City WPA/FAP Mural Division and in 1937, was a founding member of the American

Abstract Artists group. From 1946 until his death in 1965, he was an influential professor at Brooklyn College. Through these positions, Diller influenced countless artists and encouraged the public to embrace abstraction including color field painting, minimalism and geometric abstraction. As Diller explained, abstraction was "the ideal realm of harmony, stability and order in which every form and spatial interval could be controlled and measured."

In 1990, Burgoyne Diller had a major retrospective exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. He is represented in numerous museum collections including The Art Institute of Chicago, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, New York and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Michael Rosenfeld Gallery is the exclusive representative of the Estate of Burgoyne Diller.

Michael Rosenfeld Gallery is the exclusive representative of the Estate of Burgoyne Diller.