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Cy Wagner: Black Lines & Quadrants

  • Liberal Arts Roxbury 53525 State Hwy 30 Roxbury, NY, 12474 United States (map)

LIBERAL ARTS ROXBURY is pleased to present the first solo exhibition of former Roxbury resident Cy Wagner (1926-2016). Cy Wagner: Black Lines & Quadrants opens Saturday April 27, 2019, with a reception at the gallery from 6-8pm. The event is free and open to the public.

Cy Wagner worked as a career architect and urban planner in San Antonio, Texas, and Washington, DC, and taught architecture and basic design at the University of Texas in Austin and Cornell University. Yet in tandem with his career, he was a passionate draughtsman and painter, exploring various artistic subjects and styles, ranging from Pop Art to Geometric Abstraction.   

Black Lines and Quadrants represent but two of the artist’s many series and date from around the time of Cy’s retirement from the National Capital Planning Commission in DC in 1993. In these two series, the artist is seen to be exploring color and spatial relations in a frenzied, often humorous way. Executed with exacting precision, the works display a jostling range of forms and colors, suggesting both real volumes and spaces and an imaginary theater of gesticulating forms. By structuring the works within black lines and in quadrants, Wagner conveys a sense of delightful chaos within rational order—a dynamic he surely wrestled with daily in his work as an architect. The works’ titles reveal a playful interest in the turbulent modern world, often verging on the political: Circuitry; Weather Report; The Widow Liberty; Ensalada de Mer—all suggest a keen observer’s take on the beauty and absurdity of late twentieth-century life.

Black Lines & Quadrants is the first gallery exhibition of Wagner’s work and involves large canvasses as well as works on paper. All works are for sale. LIBERAL ARTS ROXBURY is open Saturdays from 11am to 5pm, and by appointment. Contact Kevin Moore at for more information.