by Denise Bibro Fine Art

Visiting an artist in their studio has always recharged my batteries and excited me. It is wonderful to see and experience recent works and those in progress, as well as to hear the artist share their ideas, concepts and illustrate the processes involved, deepening one’s understanding of their art practice. It’s all life reinforcing!

Ascending some three plus flights of stairs to Wolfe’s expansive work and living space evoked a sense of déjà vu from the late 70s and 80s when I first began to immerse myself in city life, transitioning from my safe, rural upbringing in Litchfield County, Connecticut. It was an exhilarating time for a young college woman like myself from the boonies. At that time numerous soirées, talks, and parties were commonplace in Soho. Back then, it exuded an edgy and vibrant Bohemian atmosphere, vastly different from what it is today.

It was precious to see that there are still “last men standing” from that illustrious era, untouched by the jaws of gentrification.

Stepping into Wolfe’s expansive space I immediately felt free and could breathe. His studio made my own New York apartment seem as cramped as a high school locker! The scent of paint and wood dust lingered in the air, while raw materials such as plaster, wire, frames, and racks of works adorned the space, showcasing his established practice. Encountering creativity head-on, I was captivated.

Wolfe had new, more three-dimensional pieces. In the past DBFA has shown a number of his wall pieces, although they are often assemblages, the works that I saw were  primarily free-standing sculptures. Some reminded me of the ephemeral pieces one might encounter in the studios of artists like Brâncuși or Giacometti – raw materials displayed, studied, and repurposed for their intrinsic value. In Wolfe’s case, these materials included plaster, wood, rope, and construction wire among others. There was a palpable physicality to his work, celebrating the raw beauty inherent in the recycled materials used to create these sculptures and assemblages.

Wolfe focuses on articulating space, form, and volume while respecting the character of each material he employs. They do not feel predetermined, they are as organic as many of the materials chosen. Even though the compositions are new their whole and parts evoke a sense of an experienced past. Having traveled extensively, Wolfe assimilates his experiences and surroundings into his visual vocabulary, imbuing his compositions with a sense of intimacy and uniqueness that resonates with the viewer. Beyond the sense of space, Wolfe encourages viewers to embark on their individual journeys with his work, engaging with its mystery.

As we sat in old, comfy chairs, Wolfe shared his personal history. Growing up in a modest home in New Jersey, he left at a young age to pursue a life in art, eventually becoming an Art Director in Advertising, all while consistently creating his own work. His story resonates with the familiar struggles of many creatives. Having paid his dues for many years, he has been dedicated to persevere in Soho and continue his art practice both in the city and his upstate home in New York.

We encourage you to view Gerald Wolfe’s work on our website, Artsy, and 1stDibs. For a studio visit please contact: Denise Bibro Fine Art at [email protected].