Leah Durner's work occupies the critical space between modernism
postwar abstraction and post-Duchampian conceptualism and
post-Warholian pop. Durner's practice includes paintings in oil, acrylic, and gouache on canvas and on paper,
as well as works in poured enamel. Her work in poured enamel
references psychedelia and
process art with deeper roots
in the exuberance of the
Baroque and Rococo as well as in the modernist tradition of abstraction.
Durner has had solo exhibitions of her work a Loretta
Howard Gallery (2012), 571 Projects (2011), Nye Basham Studio (2009), Wooster Arts Space (2006,
New York solo debut), Berry College (2005), and Limbo (1999). Durner’s work has been included in
group exhibitions at Winston Wächter Fine Art (2011), The Convent (2009), Art Gotham (2005),
Cazenovia College (2005) with Julie Evans and others, Barbara Ann Levy Gallery (2000), Markham
Murray Gallery (1999), Steinbaum Kraus Gallery (1997), CBs 313 Gallery (1992), Coup de Grace Gallery
(1991 and 1989) with Karen Finley, Barbara Kruger, Nancy Spero, Jenny Holzer, Kay Rosen and others,
SoHo Center for Visual Arts with Glenn Ligon and others (1991), Wake Forest University (1994 and
1990), and City Without Walls (1986, 1987, and 1988). Durner was an artist-in-residence at the Leighton
Studios, Banff Centre for the Arts.
Durner has also curated exhibitions, published art theory, and lectured
on a number of topics, including the American landscape; gestural abstraction and phenomenology; conceptualism and its sources; Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own and art, money, and gender;
the work of the artist Dan Graham; and the work of
composers Maryanne Amacher and John Cage.
Durner’s current theoretical interests include
beauty, joy, largesse, and incarnated
Critics and scholars who have
written on Durner’s work include: David Cohen
(critic and artcritical publisher); John Yau (poet and
critic); Jorella Andrews (Head of the Department of
Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London);
and Michael Sanders (philosopher). Durner earned
her B.A. from Wake Forest University and her
M.F.A. from Mason Gross School of the Arts at
Rutgers University where she studied art theory
with Martha Rosler, performance with Geoff
Hendricks, and painting with Leon Golub.
Durner lives and works in New York City.