Skip to content

John Kelly

The Mirror Stages: Self-Portraits, 1979–2009

May 20 – July 17, 2009

The Mirror Stages: Self-Portraits, 1979–2009, Installation view, Alexander Gray Associates, 2009
Self Portrait as Cupid, 2006, Archival digital print on canvas, 28.25h x 22w in (71.76h x 55.88w cm)
Untitled I, 2002, Ink on paper
Untitled III (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait After Joni Mitchell, 1996, Oil On Canvas
He Draws on a Piece of Glass, 1997, Pencil on paper
Restore This Man, 1997, Pencil on paper
Untitled I (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Untitled II (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait, 1977, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait I, 1982, Acrylic on Canvas
Untitled (from film stills, "Diary of Somnambulist"), 1995, In 7 Parts, Oil on linen
Found Found Found, 1991, Graphite on paper
Untitled I, 1977, Ink on Vellum
Untitled I, 1981, Acrylic on paper
Self Portrait as Egon Schiele, 1984, Acrylic with mixed media on paper
Self Portrait, 1981, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait as Barbette, 1926, Oil On Canvas
Self Portrait, 2003, Marker on paper
Self Portrait I, 1980, Graphite on Vellum
Waldemar (from Panel Series), 2005, Ink on panel
Self Portrait I, 1979, Oil pastel and graphite on vellum
Self Portrait from "Divine Promiscue", 2003, Oil on linen
Evvive il Coltello, 1985, Acrylic with mixed media on paper
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "Medusa", 2005, Archival digital print on canvas, 23h x 22w in (58.42h x 55.88w cm)
Self Portrait with Dagmar Tattoo, 2005, Oil on linen
Self Portrait after Egon Schiele for Animation, 1995, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait, 1983, Acrylic, ink, graphite, oil pastel on paper
Untitled IV (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Untitled V (from Black and White Series), 1996, Oil pastel and graphite on paper
Self Portrait as Pierrot Nadar, 2005, Ink on panel
Self Portrait II, 1979, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait II, 1982, Acrylic and ink on paper
Self Portrait with Fir, 1994, Oil On Canvas
Self Portrait as Egon Schiele, 1996, Oil On Canvas
On the Death of Maria Callas, 1977, Pastel and graphite on paper
Untitled II, 1977, Oil pastel and graphite on paper
Gowestjungermann II (Berlin Series), 1984, Oil pastel and ink on paper
Self Portrait after Van Gogh, 1979, Oil, oil pastel and graphite on paper
Egon (from Panel Series), 2005, Ink on panel
Self Portrait after Dopo Leonardo, 1996, Oil On Canvas
Artaud (from Panel Series), 2005, Ink on panel
Anvil, 1981, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait III, 1982, Spray paint, acrylic and ink on paper
Self Portrait, 1991, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait as Dagmar Onassis, 1994, Oil On Canvas
Self Portrait as Barbette (from Panel Series), 2005, Ink on panel
Self Portrait as Dopo Bellini, 1996, Oil On Canvas
Untitled VI (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "Supper at Emmaus", 2206, Archival digital print on canvas
Caravaggio, Fruit Boy II, 2006, Archival digital print on canvas
Split Focus, 1982, Mixed Media On Paper
Akin: True but Dour, 2005, Oil on linen
Untitled III, 1977, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait with Red Fist, 1982, Ink, graphite and oil pastel on paper
Study for Unfinished Painting, 1980, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait III, 1980, Oil On Canvas
Self Portrait with Book, 1978, Graphite on paper
Self Portrait as Punch, 1981, Mixed Media On Paper
Self Portrait II, 1980, Graphite on paper
Untitled X (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Untitled VIIII (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pastel on Paper
Untitled II, 1976, Oil pastel on vellum
Untitled I, 1976, Graphite on paper
Untitled (Film Still from "Diary of Somnambulist"), 2003, Oil on linen
Untitled, 1983, Acrylic with mixed media on paper
Untitled I, 1979, Ink on paper
Untitled I, 1980, Graphite on paper
Untitled, 1992, Graphite on Vellum
Untitled II, 2002, Graphite and pastel on paper
Untitled VIII (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Untitled VII (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "Narcissus", 2007, Archival digital print on canvas, 19h x 13w in (48.26h x 33.02w cm)
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "Bacchus", 2007, Archival digital print on canvas, 19h x 13w in (48.26h x 33.02w cm)
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "Penitent Magdalene", 2007, Archival digital print on canvas, 19h x 13w in (48.26h x 33.02w cm)
Untitled III, 1983, Oil pastel and ink on paper
Self Portrait III, 1979, Oil pastel and graphite on paper
Self Portrait after Caravaggio's "St. John the Baptist", 2007, Archival digital print on canvas, 19h x 13w in (48.26h x 33.02w cm)
Gowestjungermann III (Berlin Series), 1984, Oil pastel and ink on paper
Untitled II, 1993, Marker on paper
Untitled XI (from Black and White Series), 1996, Pencil on paper
Untitled II, 1981, Graphite on paper
Untitled (Cast of Moondrunk), 2003, Oil on linen
Untitled, 1978, Ink on paper
Untitled I, 1993, Graphite on paper
Untitled II, 1980, Oil pastel and graphite on vellum
Untitled II, 1979, Green pencil on paper
Self Portrait after Albrecht Dürer, 1996, Oil On Canvas
Gowestjungermann III (Berlin Series), 1984, Oil pastel and ink on paper
Mona (from Panel Series), 2005, Ink on panel
Double Self Portrait, 1978, Graphite on paper

Press Release

John Kelly
The Mirror Stages: Self-Portraits, 1979–2009
Alexander Gray Associates

Alexander Gray Associates presented a project with renowned performance artist, John Kelly. Since emerging on the East Village club scene in the early 1980s, Kelly’s enigmatic performance work has been presented at international venues and festivals. His performance work, blending elements of dance, story–telling, song and experimental theater, draw from fictional and historical figures and subject matter ranging from the fall of the Berlin Wall and the AIDS crisis to German Expressionist film. The cast of characters he has developed since the 1980s has morphed personal narrative with stylized and celebrated notables from Art History and culture, including the Mona Lisa, Caravaggio, Martha Graham, Egon Schiele, Jean Cocteau, and musical sources as varied as Gustav Mahler, Joni Mitchell, Robert Schumann, and Maria Callas.

A relatively unknown part of Kelly’s practice is his work as a visual artist. Since the 1970s, he has consistently created self-portraits, in the form of drawings, paintings, photographs and, more recently, with video. The studio time devoted to making these artworks is often a core part of the development of subsequent performance works. In the gallery exhibition, over 40 self–portraits were hung, salon–style, creating a portrait hall of Kelly’s many personae and faces, expressions and phases. Together, they showed Kelly’s sensitivity as a draftsman and painter, while providing psychological and stylistic threads through thirty years of dance, theater and music.