Artist Blog

Every week an artist whose single image was published by Der Greif is given a platform in which to blog about contemporary photography.

I want my paintings to demand something of you – Patrick Brennan

May 20, 2018 - Ellen Bahr

I met Patrick Brennan when he came to Alfred University as a visiting professor of drawing and painting. His work stuck in my head, and I often thought about how I wanted to make photographs like his paintings. I haven’t come anywhere near to achieving that goal, but his work has been a real inspiration, taking me in directions I wouldn’t have otherwise considered.


In a recent interview in Maake Magazine, Patrick talked about the how being away from New York City impacted his work:


“Leaving the city regularly is fairly new to me and it has been eye opening! I hope that the paintings give people a sense of that. I want the viewer to imagine what it would be like to live in the picture they are looking at. I am never too comfortable in the natural world, and now know to expect the unexpected. This has become a real theme in my work. I want my paintings to demand something of you when you’re in a room with them. I thrive on the potential of what that experience can do, and the anxiety returns in that potential.”


Patrick Brennan has shown his paintings and videos nationally and internationally, including: MoMA / PS1, Galerie Lelong, Nicole Klagsbrun, Fitzroy, Cleopatra’s, Essex Flowers, Parrish Art Museum, Anthology Film Archives and Edward Thorpe Gallery in New York; V1 Gallery in Copenhagen, Cooper Cole in Toronto, Canada, Hiener Contemporary in Washington, DC and Romer Young in San Francisco.  Brennan was awarded a NYFA Fellowship in Painting in 2015. His work has been reviewed and published in The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Hyperallergic, Modern Painters Daily and The Brooklyn Rail. Brennan has curated shows in New York at Nicole Klagsbrun, Zieher Smith, Monya Rowe Gallery and Halsey McKay and is a founding member of Essex Flowers, established in 2013 as an artist run space in the Lower East Side. Brennan is represented by Halsey Mckay Gallery in New York and Romer Young in San Francisco.