On display at Jonathan LeVine Gallery is Dan Witz’s first solo exhibit with the gallery entitled Mosh Pits, Humans and Otherwise. The exhibit features large-scale oil paintings on canvas from Witz’s celebrated Mosh Pit series—produced over the past ten years—marking the first time works in this series have be exhibited together.
Influenced by his background as a musician in post-punk noise bands during the downtown scene of New York in the early 1980s, the Mosh Pit motif marries Witz’s two passions—performing and painting, both heavily fueled by the rebellious spirit of art and music of his generation. In contrast to paintings that portray throngs of punk youth, titled after music venues such as ABC No Rio, Witz expands upon the crowd theme to include a rush-hour herd of suit-wearing businessmen in Grand Central Station in addition to non-human subjects in other works with animals such as a pack of fighting dogs and a writhing mass of rats. Offsetting the aggressive tone and group energy of the Mosh Pits, additional works represent Witz’s captivating portraiture with isolated female subjects whose faces are illuminated by the screens of their mobile devices and a group of paintings which depict figures inspired by erotic fetish subcultures. All of Witz’s works express a provocative point of view, informed by an artist who constantly strives to challenge his audience as well as himself.
Mosh Pits, Humans and Otherwise will be on display until July 30th, so be sure to view this body of work in person if you're in the New York area.