Allan Wexler

Allan Wexler

Fellow: Awarded 2016
Field of Study: Fine Arts

Competition: US & Canada

Allan Wexler has worked in the fields of architecture, design and fine art for forty-five years. He has been represented by the Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York City since 1984 and has exhibited, taught and lectured nationally and internationally since 1972. Wexler currently teaches at Parsons School of Design in New York City.

Wexler is a fellow of the American Academy in Rome, winner of a Chrysler Award for Design Innovation and the Henry J Leir Prize from the Jewish Museum in New York.

He has had numerous national and international solo exhibitions, has lectured on his work internationally and has been reviewed by major art and architecture publications.

Wexler’s career resists easy classification. In the late1960’s he was an early member of the group of architects and artists who questioned the perceived divide between art and the design disciplines. They called themselves non-architects or paper architects.

Wexler’s work explores the poetics of space and non-function in the functional. “I’m an artist in an architect’s body,” says Allan Wexler.

His medium is the complex relationship between art and design. The work considers the power of the handcrafted in the time of digital, the use of chance and the value of accident, our body’s relationship to the built, and our roots from the primitive hut. These experimental works have sought to examine architecture in order to re-evaluate our most basic assumptions about our relationship to what we build, why we build and how that effects and our daily lives.

Wexler is best known as a hands-on maker. He investigates using series, permutations and chance rather than searching for definitive solutions. He makes buildings, furniture, vessels and utensils as backdrops and props for everyday human activity. The works isolate and elevate our daily activities: dining, sleeping, and bathing. And they, in turn, become mechanisms that activate ritual, ceremony and movement, turning the ordinary into theater.

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