Roxy Paine summarized his career “as a trajectory of five oscillating wavelengths”. The series he named “Specimen Cases” is one of these oscillations. The present work is the first of the cases made by Paine and it features a rich history of exhibitions and gallery provenance including Ronald Feldman Fine Arts, Christie’s East, Perogi 2000 Gallery, and James Cohan Gallery. The work was referenced and illustrated in Joseph D. Ketner’s Roxy Paine: Second Nature and Eleanor Heartney’s monograph, Roxy Paine. Specimens has also been the subject of academic dissertation and social media. Roxy Paine’s works are found in the collections of museums throughout the world, as well as in major private collections, including those of Vera List and Eli Broad. Roxy Paine’s distinguished history of exhibition stretches over twenty years, the most recent a critically acclaimed solo exhibition at Kavi Gupta Gallery in Chicago. Marianne Boesky Gallery chose to exhibit Paine’s work exclusively at the 2014 ADAA Fair in New York.
In earlier works including Specimen Case, the artist dissected the brushstrokes of a painting, the supreme mark of individual expression. [Paine] molded them into individually sculpted components, as if producing a kit ready to assemble into a painting. Whether they are the painting, drawing, or sculpture machines – the artist employs them to divorce the act of creation from direct human gesture and touch, and casts doubt upon the value of the unique art object.
Joseph D. Ketner, Roxy Paine: Second Nature