At once reflexive and subjective, the paintings of Christopher Wool emerged in the mid-1980s at a time when the medium, declared obsolete, was undergoing disruption. Wool’s early work is inseparable from the context of urban New York, whose dark, underground vitality it captured.
It combines the expressiveness of American Abstraction with the rigor of minimalism and the impact of pop art. Though in his early works Wool manually copied “found” elements (sentences written in stenciled typography, repeated and decorative motifs), he later produced large abstract compositions. Laid over complex layers and pentimentos, colors and lines animate compositions executed in monumental scale, but the chromatic range is limited to mainly black, white, and grey, while allowing for some highlights.