Stanley Brouwn

Jan Mot

Of nine works in this exhibition, two came from Stanley Brouwn’s “This Way Brouwn” series from the early 1960s. In these legendary pieces, he asked passersby to give directions to specific locations and encouraged them to draw him maps. The results on sheets of paper were small street plans, city blocks hastily sketched to accompany verbal directions. (It should be noted that Brouwn refused to allow his work to be reproduced in print.) The artist then stamped the phrase THIS WAY BROUWN on the documents to authenticate them as artworks.

Brouwn, who died in May, devoted his artistic life to an unconventional form of abstraction. In a way, his work feels like a postwar elaboration of Dutch modernism, particularly De Stijl: Brouwn reduces the rational lines of Piet Mondrian and Theo van Doesburg to traces and measurements of a body. Associated first with Fluxus and later with Conceptual art,

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