Temptations in the Glass House

  From left, "Accattone, 1978''  (oil wax, modeling paste on canvas). Right: "Jack the Bellboy / A Season in Hell, 1975'' (joint compound, Rhoplex, oil, plaster, wire mesh on canvas), by Julian Schnabel. in  the show "Wax Paintings from the 1970s,'' at the Glass House Museum, New Canaan, Conn,. through June 5.  (The celebrated Glass House, with its, yes, its glass  exterior walls, was designed by the late  famous Modernist architect Philip Johnson in a bucolic setting in a rich New York City suburb.    -- Photo by Andy Romer

From left, "Accattone, 1978''  (oil wax, modeling paste on canvas). Right: "Jack the Bellboy / A Season in Hell, 1975'' (joint compound, Rhoplex, oil, plaster, wire mesh on canvas), by Julian Schnabel. in  the show "Wax Paintings from the 1970s,'' at the Glass House Museum, New Canaan, Conn,. through June 5.  (The celebrated Glass House, with its, yes, its glass  exterior walls, was designed by the late  famous Modernist architect Philip Johnson in a bucolic setting in a rich New York City suburb.

-- Photo by Andy Romer


The museum says: "This show offers a glimpse into Julian Schnabel's first steps into painting. The six pieces on display at the Glass House were all drawn before his first solo exhibition in New York City at the Mary Boone Gallery in 1979. These works present themes woven throughout the artist's style. The artist layers a silky wax and modeling paste to tempt the viewer towards the surface and to offer insight into the artist's process. The multiple layers of dense wax add a third dimension to the piece. Schnabel also notched into the surface of his paintings and built off these marks to represent the passage of time. It takes many years to hone a unique style. This is proven in Schnabel's pieces such as in "Accattone,'' with the deep raw tones of red wax, and in 'Procession' (for Jean Vigo) amplifying the contrasting use of black and white wax.