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600 Washington Square South
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Appointment Recommended
215 629 1000
Locks Gallery was founded in 1968 as Marian Locks Gallery. Originally on the 1800 block of Chestnut Street, it was the first commercial gallery in Philadelphia devoted exclusively to contemporary art. Now located on Washington Square Park and under the direction of Sueyun Locks, the gallery continues to highlight local talent with a strong focus on women artists, alongside national and international artists. The exhibition program is a diverse combination of fresh perspectives on 20th-century masters, showcases of emerging talent, and new bodies of work from a core group of acclaimed mid-career artists. The gallery regularly publishes illustrated catalogs with scholarly essays and hosts public programs such as artist talks, panel discussions, and gallery walkthroughs. Working closely with museums and private collections, Locks Gallery prides itself on placing works at world-renowned institutions including the Met, Hirshhorn, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Princeton Art Museum, MFA Boston, and MoMA.
Artists Represented:
Edna Andrade
Jennifer Bartlett
Lynda Benglis
Kate Bright
Thomas Chimes
Louise Fishman
Neysa Grassi
Ellen Harvey
Nadia Hironaka and Matthew Suib
Jane Irish
Virgil Marti
Sarah McCoubrey
Sarah McEneaney
John Moore
Tim Portlock
Joanna Pousette-Dart
Warren Rohrer
David Row
Alyson Shotz
Pat Steir
Rob Wynne
Yeesookyung
Works Available By:
Ann Agee
Polly Apfelbaum
Richard Artschwager
Louise Belcourt
Nancy Graves
Willem de Kooning
Howard Hodgkin
Jun Kaneko
Roy Lichtenstein
Robert Motherwell
Alice Neel
Louise Nevelson
Robert Rauschenberg
George Segal
Frank Stella

 

 
Joanna Pousette-Dart, "Floating World," Locks Gallery, 2020
Jun Kaneko, Locks Gallery, 2021
Pat Steir, Locks Gallery, 2019
Edna Andrade, "Taking Shape," Locks Gallery, 2019
Jennifer Bartlett, "In the Garden," Locks Gallery, 2014
Polly Apfelbaum and Lynda Benglis, "Free Fall," Locks Gallery, 2015
Gallery Facade, 600 Washington Square South, Philadelphia
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Current Exhibitions

Jennifer Bartlett

Recitative



October 8, 2021 - November 27, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present "Jennifer Bartlett: Recitative", a solo exhibition featuring the artist’s monumental titular painting. Composed of 372 steel plates and measuring over 158 feet across, Bartlett’s colossal polyptych navigates the reductionistic practices of Minimalism and rule-based systems of Conceptualism.

Jennifer Bartlett

Interlude



October 8, 2021 - November 13, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present "Jennifer Bartlett: Interlude, a solo exhibition of works on paper. Interlude covers a period of ten years from the 1990s to the late aughts, and extensive research revealed nearly four hundred works from this period. Never shown together until now, this group of work was amassed from a number of private collections.

 
Past Exhibitions

Sarah McEneaney

Home and Away



September 1, 2021 - October 2, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Home and Away, a solo exhibition by renowned Philadelphia artist Sarah McEneaney. This marks the fourth solo exhibition of McEneaney at the gallery and is accompanied by a catalogue in conversation with curator and scholar Janine Mileaf. Since the 1970s, McEneaney has fervently captured the splendor and catenation of her environments, including her home, studio, pets, and neighborhood. Home and Away expands on this autobiographical narrative by including scenes of travel and artist residencies to give a fuller scope of her practice and how it shapes her body of work. The exhibition includes earlier examples of egg tempera paintings alongside recent large-scale works in acrylic and collage, chronicling a shift in technique and perspective.

Thomas Chimes

Centennial



September 1, 2021 - October 2, 2021
Celebrating the 100 year anniversary of his birth, Locks Gallery is pleased to announce "Thomas Chimes: Centennial." Chimes' trajectory as an artist can be seen through distinct periods embodying shifts in material and approach, with each body of work demonstrating meticulous craftsmanship and deep intellectual engagement with his sometimes hidden subject matter. "Thomas Chimes: Centennial" features works made from the last thirty years of his life in which recognizable imagery and color gradually dissipates from his canvases and he invents a new mode of working on a small scale.

Jun Kaneko



June 3, 2021 - July 31, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of Jun Kaneko, the artist’s seventh solo exhibition with the gallery, featuring significant freestanding ceramic forms and wall-hung pieces with abstract designs and markings. Originally trained as a painter in Japan and captured by the California Clay Movement of the early 1960s, Kaneko has for decades explored the interpenetration of form and space in his sculptures.

Willem de Kooning



May 13, 2021 - June 30, 2021
Through twelve distinct works, spanning from the 1940s through the 1970s, "Willem de Kooning" highlights the late artist’s strength in seamlessly traversing, and blending, abstraction and figuration.

David Row



April 2, 2021 - May 14, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings by David Row. This is the artist’s third solo show with the gallery. A catalog with an essay by Carter Ratcliff accompanies the exhibition.

Jane Irish



February 23, 2021 - March 31, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of recent paintings and ceramics by Philadelphia-based artist Jane Irish (b. 1955).

Ellen Harvey

The Painting as Ornament, The Ornament as Painting



November 11, 2020 - February 19, 2021
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Ellen Harvey’s monumental Metal Painting along with recent related bodies of work that invert and re-contextualize the traditionally hierarchical relationship between the fine and decorative arts, between the celebrated artist and the artisan laboring in obscurity.

Louise Belcourt



November 6, 2020 - December 22, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Louise Belcourt (b. 1961). This will be the artist’s second solo show with the gallery.

Neysa Grassi



September 8, 2020 - October 17, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present the 10th solo exhibition of Philadelphia artist Neysa Grassi (b.1951) which will include a selection of recent works. Known for her meticulous and deeply rich multi-layered paintings, the examination and application of transition, memory and chromatic shifts is central to her practice. Often working on a singular painting for more than a year, Grassi’s endless dedication of applying countless layers of paint and sustained concentration is experienced in each work.

Joanna Pousette-Dart

Floating World



September 8, 2020 - October 31, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of recent paintings and drawings by Joanna Pousette-Dart (American, b. 1947). This will be the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery following her inclusion in the 2017 group exhibition Shape Paintings.

Elizabeth Osborne

Liquid Landscapes



June 20, 2020 - July 15, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Elizabeth Osborne: Liquid Landscapes, an online exhibition spanning forty years of the artist's atmospheric exploration of both land and sea. Utilizing a technique of controlled pours of thinned acrylic and oil paint on unprimed canvas to create a staining technique became a vital component in the artist's practice during the 1970s. Aware of a similar technique pioneered by painters such as Helen Frankenthaler and Morris Louis, Osborne was initially interested in capturing the light and transparency of her watercolors and pushing its translation onto canvas. Osborne has also frequently painted outdoors with watercolor—some of her beloved locations are Manchester by the Sea, coastal Maine, and the southwest.

Jennifer Bartlett

Sea Wall



June 1, 2020 - July 31, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present the installation of Jennifer Bartlett's major work, Sea Wall (1985). Exhibited in her fifteen-year traveling retrospective in 1985, Bartlett’s piece encompasses three canvases and over a dozen sculptural elements - from houses to boats to stepping stones - stretching over thirty-five feet in length. Bodies of water as elements of the landscape have been a long-recurring subject for the artist, as the surprising array of assorted sculptural objects stand in for the human form while luscious, pictorially-rich canvases span thirty feet alongside the three-dimensional objects found in Sea Wall.

Thomas Chimes

The One Who Whispers



February 21, 2020 - May 16, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Thomas Chimes: The One Who Whispers, which investigates Chimes’ connection to literature, science, and ephemerality through the artist’s white paintings, spanning from 1980-2009.

Rob Wynne

Speechless



February 21, 2020 - March 28, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Speechless, featuring recent work by New York-based artist Rob Wynne. For his fifth solo show at the gallery, Wynne will exhibit recent works that explore the elusive nature of language through his use of eccentric materials.

Warren Roher

A Silent Call



January 10, 2020 - February 15, 2020
Locks Gallery is pleased to announce A Silent Call, an exhibition of Warren Rohrer’s paintings from the 1980s. Emerging from the experimental Philadelphia art scene in the early 1970s, Warren Rohrer (1927-1995) became known for his luminous, meditative paintings that concentrate intensely on subtle shifts of color and the steady repetition of the stroke. This exhibition highlights Rohrer’s work from the 1980s, a period between his subdued Pond series and the bolder Field Language series, and includes paintings that have never before been exhibited at the gallery. Rohrer’s study of the perception of color reflected his interest in expanding painterly abstraction while at the same time referencing the Pennsylvanian landscapes in Lancaster County from which he drew inspiration. Featured work by Rohrer of "Nightshade" 1987-88, oil on linen, 48 1/4 x 48 1/4 inches.

Robert Motherwell, Joseph Cornell, and more

Assemblages



January 10, 2020 - February 15, 2020

Robert Motherwell, Edna Andrade, Richard Diebenkorn, Joanna Pousette-Dart, Philip Guston, and more

Works on Paper



November 1, 2019 - December 14, 2019

Elizabeth Osborne

A Painter's Place



November 1, 2019 - December 14, 2019
Locks Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Philadelphia artist Elizabeth Osborne. The gallery has worked with the artist for the past four decades, and this exhibition represents a continuation of Osborne’s landscape paintings that highlight her vivid and immersive compositions, many of which stem from the locations of her travels. From the hills and shores of Maine and Nova Scotia to the architectural details of Mexico, the artist navigates the transitions between abstraction and realism.

Edna Andrade

Taking Shape



September 6, 2019 - October 19, 2019
Locks Gallery is pleased to announce Taking Shape, an overview of Edna Andrade’s geometric work from the 1960s through the 1980s that forefronts her studies, drawings, and sketches, alongside selected larger-scale paintings. The presentation highlights the methodical working practice of an artist who was perpetually re-working and investigating new forms. Andrade was deeply invested in shape, vision, and color, and her well-known Op Art paintings were the products of hundreds of hours of preparation. A selection of never-before-seen archival pieces reveal her lifelong, thoroughgoing investigation of the optics of seeing through process and study.

Louise Fishman

My City



September 6, 2019 - October 19, 2019
Locks Gallery is pleased to announce My City, Louise Fishman’s first solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition features recent paintings and marks a return home for Fishman, who was born in Philadelphia, where she spent her early life and attended Tyler School of Art at Temple University, before settling in New York. Louise Fishman’s career to date spans over five decades, throughout which she has produced tough and uncompromising work that is at once architectonic and poetic. Her paintings are layered upon an improvised structural grid assembled out of strokes, skeins, and slashes of oil paint, applied with large, serrated trowels and scrapers, along with more traditional paint brushes—and sometimes, her hands. Fishman’s work celebrates the process of painting and its materiality in works where containment and release are palpably visible. She adds, scrapes away, and re-applies paint, sometimes working and reworking canvases over a long period of time.

Louise Belcourt, Kate Bright, Yeesookyung, Virgil Marti, Rob Wynne

Sunblink



July 8, 2019 - August 16, 2019
Kate Bright (London, UK) studies the seductive refractions of light in pools, fountains, and ponds. Her signature style utilizes glitter, resin, glass and polystyrene on the surfaces of the paintings. Rob Wynne (New York, NY) choreographs large hand-poured abstractions of mirrored glass on the walls that glimmer while they call natural formations and swarms of organic form to mind. Using bold colors, radiant light, and dynamic perspectives, Louise Belcourt (Brooklyn, NY and Quebec) paints images of tectonic landforms—stacked, occluded, and cascading into foreground and background—medled melded with natural forms. Virgil Marti’s (Philadelphia) The Golden Bough (2013) is cast from a split tree trunk and features a gilded grapevine, immortalizing and petrifying their natural features. Yeesookyung (Seoul, Korea) creates organic, “grafted” structures from discarded pieces of Joseon-style ceramics deemed imperfect by potters that evolve into contemporary, life-imbued, conceptual forms.

Pat Steir



May 14, 2019 - September 29, 2019
Pat Steir is an acclaimed figure in contemporary art history, known for her site-specific wall drawings and signature style of abstract painting. In the studio, she pours, splashes, and drips paint onto vertically hung canvases. Steir's practice embraces chance as a conceptual backbone for her work; the paintings form themselves through gravity and transform their own palette through the chemistry of the paint layers. The artist was raised outside of Philadelphia and its cultural institutions had a deep influence on her early artistic trajectory. Having exhibited Pat Steir's work for over twenty years, Locks Gallery is proud to present this exhibition of new paintings.

Lynda Benglis

Over Air



May 3, 2019 - June 28, 2019
Throughout her career Lynda Benglis has often taken a serial approach to her work, replicating a process to push her materials to the extremes of their formal potential. Her comfort in unexplored territory has led to an abandonment of traditional media and aesthetics, with the work often occupying an uncanny space between the grotesque and beautiful, between material and flesh. Celebrated for her ability to bring painterly fluidity to sculptural forms, this exhibition showcases three of Benglis’ sculptural styles: ceramic, paper and polyurethane.

Sarah McEneaney

Callowhill



April 5, 2019 - May 11, 2019
For decades, Sarah McEneaney has captured the simplicity of her surroundings—her home, her studio, her garden, her pets, and her neighborhood—with reverent attention. The care with which she renders each minute detail forms the architectural structure of her environment and the scaffolding of her personality, her passions, and the inhabitants of her life. In these paintings, the viewer becomes omnipotent, tracing the underpinnings of McEneaney’s life in vibrant, nonlinear narratives: featuring multiples of the artist and her pets as they make their way through time and space.

Sarah McCoubrey

Centennial



February 22, 2019 - March 29, 2019
In her latest series of paintings, Sarah McCoubrey captures the eerie magnificence of a generation that stands between two times—rooted in the last breaths of manual traditions carried from the nineteenth century, but charging toward the machine acceleration of the modern era. McCoubrey articulates the valor and brutality of World War I through the lace-maker’s painstaking language of a traditionally feminine craft. After beginning a sabbatical abroad in Belgium in 2014, at the cusp of the centennial of World War I, McCoubrey became enraptured by the the delicate beauty of Belgian lacework and the conflict’s effect on an artistry devastated by the wartime rationing of linen. McCoubrey’s fine calligraphic strokes revive the ancestral folk medium to weave a narrative which invokes feminine creativity—forging elegant lace lines in gouache to depict stoic wooden ships, hooded gas masks adorning the solemn figures of soldiers, and intricate domestic motifs grounded on repurposed butter papers: the relics of rationing. Centennial pays reverence to a period, perhaps not so far gone, when time might have moved differently between letters from the front, the delicate handicraft of items made in the home, and the slow glide of ships across the sea.

David Hartt, Tim Portlock

Fallow Fate



February 22, 2019 - March 29, 2019
Artists David Hartt and Tim Portlock transcribe their worlds, creating complex narratives that address global exchange, racial tension, and the physical and sociological effects of failed modernist projects. Man-made deterioration is juxtaposed with representations of sublime and persistent nature—creating images of startling elegance despite their crumbling subjects. Atmosphere and ideology frame fraught narratives of white flight, urban planning, and socioeconomic stratification—issues which have been endemic to social design since the nineteenth century, but which were exacerbated throughout the economic booms and busts of the mid-to-late-twentieth century. Picturing the banal landscape of industrial decline, both Hartt and Portlock reassert the distance from which most individuals will view these problems. In scenes at once devoid of human life and irreparably changed by human hands, these artists call attention to the cyclical entropy of humanity on a global scale while also rendering beauty into these abandoned environments. Fallow Fate provides a valence through which we might view stasis as a point of recovery.

Jennifer Bartlett

In the Garden: Strange Holiday, 1980-83



January 4, 2019 - February 9, 2019
During the winter of 1979–80, Jennifer Bartlett traded homes with British novelist Piers Paul Read, exchanging her SoHo loft for a mediocre villa in Nice far from the famed seafront which had inspired the paintings of Matisse, Bonnard, Renoir, and Picasso. The series borne of this disappointing tourism, In the Garden, reinvigorated her practice and captured the myriad of natural forces and emotional states that she experienced during her stay. The fluency with which Bartlett transcribed the emotive potential of an otherwise desolate scene and the deftness of her mark-making prompted a 1983 review in Time Magazine where Robert Hughes proclaimed Bartlett to be a “connoisseur of unease,” because she simultaneously captured the banality of her surroundings while developing a forensic antidote to the ennui of her generation. Locks Gallery is pleased to present a reconstitution of In the Garden that highlights the serialized nature of this body of work. In the Garden was produced first from life as roughly 200 hundred works on paper; later reinterpreted from photographs as prints and enamel plates; and finally resolved in large triptych and five-panel paintings. Strange Holiday is a showcase of this tremendous body of work, a testament to the Gallery’s long relationship with the artist, and a rare opportunity to encounter this touchstone of masterful drawings, pastels, plates and paintings in one place.

Elizabeth Osborne

Homage To...



November 17, 2018 - December 22, 2018
In conversation with the exhibition of Matisse drawings and prints, Locks will present a concurrent exhibition of works on paper by prominent Philadelphia artist, Elizabeth Osborne. This exhibition, Homage to… features works that exemplify the artist’s process as well as her deep relationship to her models. Osborne, an artist greatly-influenced by Matisse’s use of color and light, explores interior space and decoration to create intimate portraits of her subjects, many of whom she remains close to, after having worked with them for decades. The watercolor studies and drawings featured in this exhibition are intensely personal—capturing, like Matisse, the individual spark of her models in rich blocks of color and simple lines.

Henri Matisse

Drawings and Prints



November 17, 2018 - December 22, 2018
Locks Gallery is pleased to present a selection of 1920s prints as well as 1930s drawings, which exemplify the expressive range and capability of Matisse’s line. These works are simple contour drawings depicting subjects deep in concentration, reading or watching fish in vague geometric- and floral-patterned spaces as well as fully-rendered, luxurious interiors that settle around languid nudes whose forward gazes are captured with simple strokes. By presenting these works as a group, the viewer may immerse themself in Matisse's process and glean the foundation of his painted and papercut masterpieces.

Pat Steir, Sean Scully, Lee Ufan, Bernard Frize, John Armleder, Liliane Tomasko, Sadie Benning, Warren Rohrer

Catch It and Lose It



October 5, 2018 - November 24, 2018
The past 60 years have seen the tide of abstract painting ebb and flow. Its time of death is called every few decades followed by a revival of representational art, the breakneck pace of technology, or the fickleness of the market. And yet, it is miraculously revived every so often—ostensibly for the first time. In its ineffability, it resists communion with contemporary fashion—refusing to serve as a cultural mirror or temporal guide. It is a language forged through materiality, negotiated agency, and distance. As a genre, “abstract painting” connects a rich genealogy of artists united by an ever-evolving syntax of vernaculars that weave a grand tradition only to splinter and reknot in unknowable formation. Taking its name from the work of early 20th century British poet, artist, and futurist, Mina Loy, Catch It & Lose It seeks a space between certainty and ambiguity, allowing the astonishing breadth of contemporary abstraction to propagate unhindered.

Anni Albers, Edna Andrade, Dadamaino

Optical // Obstacle



October 5, 2018 - November 10, 2018
Anni Albers (1899 - 1994), Edna Andrade (1917 - 2008), and Dadamaino (1930 - 2004) each made outstanding contributions to the evolution of postwar abstraction during a period in which innovations by female artists were eclipsed by those of their male counterparts. Optical // Obstacle brings together works of art by these three pioneering female artists active around the mid-twentieth century.

Kate Bright

Soft Estate



August 20, 2018 - September 29, 2018
Locks Gallery is pleased to present Soft Estate, an exhibition of new works by London-based artist Kate Bright (b. 1964). Bright’s previous series are well recognized for their incorporation of non- traditional material such as glitter, styrofoam, and glass in the portrayal of natural, non-figurative landscapes including scenes depicting glitter soaked snowfall, and glistening reflections on the surfaces of ponds and pools. In this new suite of paintings, the artist forgoes cooler seasons and the use of synthetic materials for vibrant depictions of wild British flora in saturated, tropical palettes. To accompany the exhibition, a new publication has been published by Locks Gallery to survey Bright’s 20 year career.

John Moore

Counterpoint



August 20, 2018 - September 29, 2018
John Moore is a contemporary realist painter whose compositions primarily focus on post-industrial America. His paintings are imbued with the lingering energy of rusting steel, burnished wood, and built-up paint that comprise a familiar contemporary urbanism. In these composite scenes of skylines, city parks, and brick laden interiors, Moore fabricates compositions of physical locations and idealized memories, offering a contemplative renewal of the changing age of industry.