- Andrew Hart Adler
The path of Andrew Hart Adler from the shores of the United States to the foot of Africa has been anything but straightforward.
Born in New York City, Adler moved as a young child to London, where his mother sent him to an academy of art from the age of seven. With the death of their mother, his brother Christopher and he returned to the USA to live with their father, Broadway composer Richard Adler.
After completing his studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Adler became the assistant to Willem de Kooning for two years. A summer in Paris turned into fifteen years. Then six years in Munich were followed by eight years in the south of France, with a period in Costa Rica, before a return to New York City and Sag Harbor. Adler has been driven by restlessness and rootlessness from place to place, always considering his studio his home.
His artworks have been exhibited even more widely – across the USA and Europe, alongside Masters like Picasso, Matisse, Chagall, Pollock and de Kooning.
His second passion in life – rowing – brought him to Cape Town for the first time in 1987 for a few short weeks. He relocated here permanently a number of years later, setting up his studio in industrial Woodstock.
Travel has always inspired him and been a necessary part of his work, but it is here in Cape Town for the first time that he has felt centred. This centring has given rise to a body of work that is breaking new ground for Adler. 99 Loop is thrilled to be exhibiting it.
The artworks included in this exhibition are also anything but straightforward. These fresh, confident pieces still draw on Adler’s own history as well as the history of art, but find common focus in their freedom of expression and seeming spontaneity. They straddle the tense line between abstraction and figuration with a mixture of oil, dry pigment, silicon wax, gel medium and ink jet printing.
While they cohere in their elegant composition and movement, each work is born from something unique in the real world, whether a bright ibis or Gaudi cathedral, a dancer’s step or a quiet moment in a museum. This reveals de Kooning’s influence, where each painting has a departure point, acting as a trigger for the artist’s process. As our eyes track across the colours and crescendos of each artwork (remnants of musical composition), we can follow Adler’s journey, as well as see his arrival.
Catalogues are available from the gallery.