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Presenter: Perry Gunther
A simple definition of space is that it is an empty distance between things. In a sense, space itself does not exist. But when space is embodied, it is more than an emptiness. In therapy, it might describe what goes on in the space between the therapist and patient. In art, paintings are not only about what things look like, they are also about the embodied space that brings life to the paintings. This presentation is an inquiry about embodied space in art and its relationship to embodied space in therapy. It is particularly timely now that we are conducting therapy online. What kind of space are we engaged in electronically? This presentation includes a slide demonstration as well as didactic experiments with space.
This is Perry Gunther’s second presentation at NYIGT. His first one was entitled Meeting Art at the Contact Boundary.
Perry began his career as an artist studying with noted artists of the New York School, including Ad Reinhardt and Tony Smith. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree under the tutelage of William Rubin, then the head curator at MoMA. After he submitted a paper on the influence of Frank Lloyd Wright on the De Stijl movement in Holland, Rubin suggested that he pursue a career as an art historian. Instead, Perry chose to continue as a practicing artist, as a denizen of the SoHo renaissance in Lower Manhattan, subsequently becoming a professor of sculpture at Cleveland State University, Hunter College, and Brooklyn College. His works have been exhibited at OK Harris Gallery and Max Hutchinson Gallery in New York City, and are in numerous collections, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the Brooklyn Museum. In 1988, Perry installed a site-specific artwork inside the Wieliczka Salt Mine in Poland. He pursued a career in Gestalt therapy when he came to understand that the greatest gift an artist can be given is a sense of self-esteem. Perry received his training at Gestalt Associates for Psychotherapy.