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Paul Laffoley (1935–2015)

The artist Paul Laffoley died yesterday after a long battle with congestive heart failure, according to his gallery Kent Fine Art in New York. Often dubbed a “visionary” artist due to his interest in a wide range of subjects, including exploring the mathematical precision of the world via painting, his work dealt with complex theoretical constructs and individual pieces were generally scaled to Fibonacci’s golden ratio. He was an active participant in numerous speculative organizations, including his own “Boston Visionary Cell,” which was founded in his studio in Boston, since the early 1970s.

Born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Laffoley studied at Harvard University and Brown University, obtaining honors in classics, philosophy, and architecture before coming to New York in 1962 where he was a studio assistant to Frederick Kiesler. Recent exhibitions of his work have been staged at the Palais de Tokyo, 2009; the Nationalgalerie/Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin, 2011; the Hayward Gallery in London; the Henry Art Gallery, Seattle; and the Yerba Buena Center in 2013. The first book devoted to Laffoley’s work, The Phenomenology of Revelation, was published by Kent Fine Art in 1989 and in March of 2016 the University of Chicago Press will release another catalogue titled The Essential Paul Laffoley.

For more on Paul Laffoley, see John Arthur Peetz’s Critic’s Pick on Laffoley’s 2013 exhibition at Kent Fine Art.

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