The works and the world of Gregg Emery are inherently imperfect: purposefully paradoxical marriages between simplicity and complexity, clarity and confusion. Emery uses each of his works to complicate his two recurring forms: the circle and the rectangle. He uses sheer physicality to drag his paint into these two shapes, allowing the colors and individual marks of each bristle to interact with one another on his muslin base in ways that are both entirely intentional, yet also left slightly to chance. Each of Emery’s pieces contains a unique, yet often limited, color palette, often inspired by unexpected sources. Derived from his everyday life, a movie scene, sunset, food or even a rusted dumpster. Through his powerful color selections and movements, Emery awakens something primal within his viewers. He triggers associations both intended and unexpected, allowing the viewer to continuously enjoy the works with their own, ever-evolving interpretations.
His own inspirations combine western mystical experiences with his Quaker grandmother and a long-time study of and within Eastern cultures, particularly Zen traditions and the Gutai Movement in Japan. Emery identifies himself as an artist as “My process is athletic. My decisions are purposeful, passion with purpose, living in the moment… entering the field of ‘play’ the battle, the fray and trying to act without being self-conscious…trusting and moving forward, trying to be perfectly human, while not trying…human which is inherently imperfect…and in those imperfections are moments of clarity and beauty. That is where,…when experience, passion, skill, intuition, inspiration all come together, that is where I hope to reside, looking out in order to look deeper inward. The past couple of years have been particularly strong for Emery as he has received critical acclaim for his exhibits around the globe. From Brussels to Beijing and back again.
Since 2017, Emery was commissioned and completed an 8,000 sq ft mural around a pool on Roosevelt Island that was featured in Time Out NY, the Gothamist and was listed by The New York Post as one of the top instagrammable places of the summer. He was selected to exhibit in the 10th Annual Governors Island Art Fair, dubbed by the New York Times as the Art Fair of the 99%. From there it was off to Brussels and the Cube Art Fair, where Emery’s paintings could be viewed alongside the work of Chuck Close and other American greats. This past year his paintings were featured during Art New York at Pier 94. Notably, they appeared prominently this spring in Season 2 of the widely acclaimed TV Show, ‘The Last O.G.’ Emery returned to Art Basel Week 2019 with Contemporary Art Projects USA at Scope Miami, Booth #F13 with two of his main abstracts, acrylic on muslin.