Art and poetry on page and stage

gift box


Nathan Lyons

word is
Untitled (Rochester 20), n.d., Archival pigment print 7 x 10¼ in.,
© Estate of Nathan Lyons, courtesy of Bruce Silverstein Gallery, NY.

NATHAN LYONS (1930-2016) is known for his honest and often questioning depictions of America’s cultural landscape. The artist has exerted a profound impact on the field of critical visual thinking for more than forty years. He is interested in the strategic juxtaposition of images that alter the meaning of the image itself, and create an open-ended space for dialogue. Lyons devises sequences of black and white pictures often mounted as diptychs, that incorporate signage, graffiti and advertisement in order to explore the use of language in imagery, form visual puns, or critically assess the American scene. The artist’s perception of the world as a vast repertoire of signs awaiting to be decrypted reflects the current changes taking place in contemporary society, where the written word is no longer dominant, and people are constantly surrounded by an image-driven environment.