May 5–8, 2016
In conjunction with NADA New York's Project Spaces, 321 Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new paintings by Fred Terna (b.Vienna, 1923).
For over 70 years, Terna has maintained an active painting practice that responds to his experience as a survivor of the Terezin, Auschwitz, and Dachau concentration camps. Painting since his liberation in 1945, Terna’s canvases seek to address the psychological space of trauma, often incorporating the charged symbols of chimneys and ash to abstract effect. Terna moved to Paris immediately following the war, where he was inspired by the work of the Cubists and post-Impressionists. After eventually settling in New York in 1952, Terna elaborated on the prevailing modes of Abstract Expressionism with a personal style that infused textural elements into his compositions. Using folded canvas, sand, and pebbles, Terna sought to activate the tactile senses, layering fields of depth and creating visual tricks.
As a nonagenarian, Terna has amassed a rich body of work that spans decades. His recent Portal series addresses the subject of the transitory. Consistent throughout these works is an investigation into the aftereffects of trauma and a complex psychic terrain, densely rendered in blues, reds, oranges and greens—all made in acrylic, mixed from polymer pigments of his own construction.