In 1977, Brooke Alexander collaborated with Jasper Johns to create an exhibition presenting the artist’s silkscreen editions. This effort was complimented by the publication of a wonderful exhibition catalog, complete with a thoughtful essay by Richard S. Field, and an original silkscreen wrap-around cover. This considered approach is indicative of Brooke Alexander’s print publishing and exhibition programs, as well as the fruitful relationship the two would share through to today.
Indeed, Brooke Alexander would go on to create several in-depth exhibitions of the prints of Jasper Johns, each focusing on distinctive aspects of his oeuvre. In 1985, Brooke Alexander presented “Jasper Johns: Trial Proof And Proofs With Additions.” Here, the individual choices and unique variances lent an introspective examination of the reconstituted image, ranging from Numbers to Ale Cans.
“I assumed that everything would lead to complete failure, but I decided that didn't matter – that would be my life. ”
In 1991, a third expansive collaboration was realized in the exhibition “Jasper Johns: The Seasons.” A hybrid of the two previous approaches, this exhibition combined the full documentation of a defined series, with the inclusion of all of the unique variations that show how Johns thinks through subjects and techniques. As in 1977, the catalog accompanying The Seasons included its own original Johns print: Summer (Green).
“My experience with life is that it's very fragmented. In one place certain kinds of thing occur, and in another place a different kind of thing occurs. I would like my work to have some vivid indication of those differences. I guess, in painting, it would amount to different kinds of space being represented in it.”
In addition, for many years, Brooke Alexander was a board member of the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. The FCA was founded in the early 1960s by Jasper Johns, Merce Cunningham and others to sponsor and encourage numerous individual artists, art groups and organizations around the country. The important work of the FCA continues, and you can learn more about their mission here: https://www.foundationforcontemporaryarts.org/
“The legendary printmaker Tatyana Grosman used to say that Johns had been so often disappointed as a child that he’d trained himself to think only of the present. Which may have everything to do with the fact that he is more interested in making art that asks ‘What happens if….?’ and comes out of some system he has invented, rather than art laden with meaning - however much meaning creeps in nevertheless.”
-Amei Wallach, review 1991
“A not complete unit or a new unit. The elements in the 3 parts should neither fit nor not fit together. One would like not to be led. Avoid the idea of a puzzle which could be solved. Remove the signs of thought. It is not thought which needs showing.”