On Friday October 14, Diaz Contemporary is pleased to present John Massey's Black on White, a suite of ten large-scale digital prints completed between 2012 and 2016. Massey's 40-year practice has long privileged collage technique, from early print works that layered distinct sets of symbols and images into one field, to digitally integrated mise-en-scènes where unlikely objects are introduced into architectural interiors and landscapes.
Black on White combines physical collage and digital graphic processing, each work conveying a dense, layered turbulence. Base layer images are glimpsed through a buildup of black figures—letterforms, punctuation marks—meticulously applied to rhetorically animate the latent energy of a personal, ontological index of signs, gestures, and declared imperatives.
John Massey was born in 1950 in Toronto where he is currently based. His work has been shown at the Vancouver Art Gallery; the Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montréal; the Wexner Art Centre, Columbus, Ohio; the Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco; the Institut fur Auslandsbeziehungen, Stuttgart; the Power Plant, Toronto; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt; the Victoria and Albert Museum, London; and the MAK-Austrian Museum of Applied Arts/Contemporary Art, Vienna.
Massey’s work is part of institutional collections including the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto; the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo; the Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montreal; the Stedelijk, Amsterdam; the Ydessa Hendeles Art Foundation, Toronto; as well as numerous private and corporate collections.