Anne Minich

January 23–March 7, 2020 East Gallery
Six pieces installed on white walls in a gallery. Between two columns in the middle of the room, STARS, Late 1970s-2020 is installed freestanding.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020.

Five pieces of significantly differing sizes installed on adjacent walls.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

Three works installed on a white wall. The piece in the center, EL JUANITA AND THE DREAM, 1991-1992, loosely resembles an altarpiece with an elaborate frame.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

ROYAL PALMS, 1980. A painting with a black frame resembling the open doors of a church. Three figures hold a cloth over a woman who is partially submerged. Above, a blue sky and palm trees.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

Three works installed in a row on a wall. All incorporate text, found objects and unconventional framing.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

Five works installed in a row on a white wall. Many of the works incorporate unconventional framing and found objects.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

Three works installed on a wall. From left to right, OUR LADY’S LILY, Split, 2015, BEACHED, My Little Red Boat, 2015-2020, and LONE RANGER, 2015-2020.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

Five works installed in a row on a white wall.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

STARS, 1970s-2020. A piece in triptych altarpiece style with seashells, featuring five figurative drawings in a classical style below a small drawing of a man in a baseball cap.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020

A diagonal grid on a pink canvas shaped like a seat cushion with a seashell embedded. Center text: “TO THE MEMORY OF ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SAT BEFORE ME.”

Anne Minich

SEATPIECE, 2018

Oil on wood, shell, and found frame

15.5 × 16.75 in.

A red boat shape that seems to hang by a string. A card with the word “Beached” is affixed with blue tape. The phrase “MY LITTLE RED BOAT” is inscribed at the bottom.

Anne Minich

BEACHED, My Little Red Boat, 2015

Oil on birch ply

31.5 × 41.5 in.

A drawing of a cropped nude body with the genitals obscured by a dark shadow. Above, a small splayed hand in red with the middle finger just touching the body.

Anne Minich

M’ HAND, 2015

Graphite, colored pencil on paper

19.5 × 16.25 in.

Press Release

White Columns is pleased to present a solo exhibition by the Philadelphia-based artist Anne Minich (b. 1932, Philadelphia, PA.) Taking the form of a partial survey of Minich’s work produced over the past four decades, the exhibition will be the first focused presentation of her work in New York since the late 1980s.

Highly idiosyncratic, and often employing a form of colloquial humor, Minich’s exquisitely constructed and painted works often incorporate religious iconography to explore her preoccupying concerns of gender, sexuality, friendship and mortality. Like the work of her peer Ree Morton, much of Minich’s work is autobiographical in nature and sculptural in approach incorporating found objects and text. The works on display at White Columns include portraits of her children (‘STARS’, late 1970s – 2020), self-portraits (‘AT 17TH ST. NYC’, 1989-2014, and ‘ROYAL PALMS’, 1980), and allusions to her late friends, the artist Juan Gonzalez (‘EL JUANITA AND THE DREAM’, 1991-1992) and the collector Baldwin Fong (‘THE FLIGHT OF BLUE HEART’, 1992-1999.)

Working in discrete but related series, throughout her career Minich has often revisited, altered and amended her earlier works, creating in turn ‘new’ updated works that reflect upon the evolving and unfolding narrative of her own life. (The work ‘PINKIE (Towards 80)’, 2014, created around the time of her 80th birthday incorporates eighty shell fragments embedded into its surface. Minich has been engaged in this process of “marking her age with paintings” since turning fifty in 1982.)

Minich attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1954-55, but abandoned her studies after two years to raise a family. Though she never entirely ceased to make art, this period was the beginning of what Minich has described as her “lost” years. In the late 1960s Minich and her family relocated to Florida, where she enrolled at the University of Miami, Coral Gables at the age of 35. There she was “able to think seriously about making art again and realizing that that was what I needed to do.”

Returning to the studio in her 30s Minich was able to make decisions about her approach to making art and to her subject matter that she felt she wouldn’t have been in a position to do at an earlier age. Minich exhibited the resulting works publicly for the first time in 1973 at the Fort Lauderdale Museum of the Arts, Florida, and in exhibitions in Miami, Palm Beach and Atlanta where she “experienced censorship and resistance” to her subject matter, which she suggests ultimately proved to be a good thing as it helped her “to dig my heels in!” Minich subsequently moved to New York in the early 1970s before returning to Philadelphia in the 1980s, where she supported both herself and her practice by working in an art supply store.

Unabashedly invested in the potential of the “decorative” Minich’s formally extraordinary and gently subversive work should be far better known. Reflecting on her approach Minich has said, “The work is mostly instinctual; I haven’t developed ideas from formal theories; the biggest influence may be the “outsiders” who, for practical reasons, used whatever was at hand. A lot of my practice developed from using severe financial constraints as a challenge for making good art.”

Anne Minich’s work has been included in recent group exhibitions at Fleisher/Ollman Gallery, Philadelphia, and Jack Barrett Gallery, New York, among others. Her work was the subject of paired solo exhibitions at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia in 2017. Parallel to her White Columns exhibition Minich’s work is currently on view in a two-person presentation at Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral. Minich’s work is held at a number of public collections including the Walker Gallery, Bowdoin College; Bryn Mawr College Special Collection; and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, among others.

Anne Minich would like to dedicate this exhibition to Baldwin Fong, Frances Cohen Gillespie, and Juan Gonzalez.

White Columns would like to thank Caitlin McBride and Ezra Tessler for introducing us to Anne’s work.

For further information, contact: info@whitecolumns.org

Six pieces installed on white walls in a gallery. Between two columns in the middle of the room, STARS, Late 1970s-2020 is installed freestanding.
Five pieces of significantly differing sizes installed on adjacent walls.
Three works installed on a white wall. The piece in the center, EL JUANITA AND THE DREAM, 1991-1992, loosely resembles an altarpiece with an elaborate frame.
ROYAL PALMS, 1980. A painting with a black frame resembling the open doors of a church. Three figures hold a cloth over a woman who is partially submerged. Above, a blue sky and palm trees.
Three works installed in a row on a wall. All incorporate text, found objects and unconventional framing.
Five works installed in a row on a white wall. Many of the works incorporate unconventional framing and found objects.
Three works installed on a wall. From left to right, OUR LADY’S LILY, Split, 2015, BEACHED, My Little Red Boat, 2015-2020, and LONE RANGER, 2015-2020.
Five works installed in a row on a white wall.
STARS, 1970s-2020. A piece in triptych altarpiece style with seashells, featuring five figurative drawings in a classical style below a small drawing of a man in a baseball cap.
A diagonal grid on a pink canvas shaped like a seat cushion with a seashell embedded. Center text: “TO THE MEMORY OF ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SAT BEFORE ME.”
A red boat shape that seems to hang by a string. A card with the word “Beached” is affixed with blue tape. The phrase “MY LITTLE RED BOAT” is inscribed at the bottom.
A drawing of a cropped nude body with the genitals obscured by a dark shadow. Above, a small splayed hand in red with the middle finger just touching the body.

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Six pieces installed on white walls in a gallery. Between two columns in the middle of the room, STARS, Late 1970s-2020 is installed freestanding.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Five pieces of significantly differing sizes installed on adjacent walls.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Three works installed on a white wall. The piece in the center, EL JUANITA AND THE DREAM, 1991-1992, loosely resembles an altarpiece with an elaborate frame.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (ROYAL PALMS, 1980. A painting with a black frame resembling the open doors of a church. Three figures hold a cloth over a woman who is partially submerged. Above, a blue sky and palm trees.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Three works installed in a row on a wall. All incorporate text, found objects and unconventional framing.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Five works installed in a row on a white wall. Many of the works incorporate unconventional framing and found objects.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Three works installed on a wall. From left to right, OUR LADY’S LILY, Split, 2015, BEACHED, My Little Red Boat, 2015-2020, and LONE RANGER, 2015-2020.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (Five works installed in a row on a white wall.)

Anne Minich, installation view, 2020. (STARS, 1970s-2020. A piece in triptych altarpiece style with seashells, featuring five figurative drawings in a classical style below a small drawing of a man in a baseball cap.)

Anne Minich SEATPIECE, 2018 Oil on wood, shell, and found frame 15.5 × 16.75 in. (A diagonal grid on a pink canvas shaped like a seat cushion with a seashell embedded. Center text: “TO THE MEMORY OF ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SAT BEFORE ME.”)

Anne Minich BEACHED, My Little Red Boat, 2015 Oil on birch ply 31.5 × 41.5 in. (AA red boat shape that seems to hang by a string. A card with the word “Beached” is affixed with blue tape. The phrase “MY LITTLE RED BOAT” is inscribed at the bottom.)

Anne Minich M’ HAND, 2015 Graphite, colored pencil on paper 19.5 × 16.25 in. (A drawing of a cropped nude body with the genitals obscured by a dark shadow. Above, a small splayed hand in red with the middle finger just touching the body.)