Israel Lund

The Brooklyn artist turns a familiar medium on its head.

Israel Lund

To say that Israel Lund makes paintings of nothing is both an oversimplification and technically true. When the 33-year-old Brooklyn artist began producing the ghostly abstractions that earned him a sudden following last year, he was simply pushing ink through a screen onto raw canvas. “With silk-screening, you’re usually trying to transfer a specific image,” Lund explains. “But I bent that convention by just letting the amount of ink, pressure, and size of the squeegee I used determine what the painting looked like. There’s a little control—but a lot of chance.” It was context—not content—that interested him most. Preparing for a solo show at Elaine Levy Project in Brussels last fall, he noticed that the gallery’s interior columns would obscure views of his work from across the room. His response: to base the paintings on a photograph of Daniel Buren’s work with graphic white stripes. “I wanted to mimic that sense of disturbance.” Recently, Lund has been more deliberate in his inspirations, referencing Martin Kippenberger’s doodles on one painting. Working off such sources, says Lund, whose next exhibition runs June 10 through July 29 at David Lewis Gallery in New York, reminds him of his image-hoarding youth, when silk-screening T-shirts was de rigueur for punk rock–obsessed skate kids. “It’s like when I was cutting out stuff that I liked to make zines and posters—that part feels familiar.”

All Over the Map

“There’s a little control—but a lot of chance.” Read more about Israel Lund here. Photograph by Amanda Hakan.

“Jokes and laughter are a way of opening up your subconscious.” Read more about Tala Madani here. Portrait by Adam Laycock.

“I have really intense attachments to every single thing in the work.” Read more about Samara Golden here. Courtesy of the artist.

“I think of my work as paintings, but I have no problem with people calling them sculptures.” Read more about Justin Adian here. Photograph by James McKee.

“The images are old, ancient even. But the way they’re all gathered from different places speaks to our world today.” Read more about Kour Pour here. Photograph by Stephanie “Elle” Quintana.

“People think Brazilians are happy all the time, but there’s a lot of sadness here.” Read more about Adriano Costa here. Courtesy of Mendes Wood DM, Sao Paulo

“I will never be the kind of artist who does one thing.” Read more about Jean-Baptiste Bernadet here. Photograph by Amanda Hakan.