August 23, 2018
Press Release - Systemic Pattern Painting: Artists of the Criss-Cross Cooperative


Including Artworks by Artists: Charles DiJulio,
Dean Fleming, Richard Kallweit, Gloria Klein,
Marilyn Nelson, Clark Richert, Dee Shapiro,
Robert Swain, George Woodman and Mario Yrisarry

Featuring Original Writings from the Criss-Cross Art Communications

September 7 - October 7, 2018

Opening Reception: Sunday September 9, 2018 1:00 - 6:00 PM

Panel Discussion with Richard Kallweit, Marilyn Nelson and Clark Richert
Moderated by Anne Swartz, Professor of Art History,
Savannah College of Art and Design
Tuesday evening, September 11 from 7:30 to 8:30 PM

David Richard Gallery, LLC
211 East 121 ST | New York, NY 10035
P: (212) 882-1705

This exhibition surveys Systemic Pattern Painting by a specific group of artists who were part of the Criss-Cross cooperative. These artists lived primarily in New York City and Boulder, Colorado and explored complex mathematically-derived patterns and abstract structures. The cooperative was part of the broader Pattern and Decoration movement from the 1970s. This presentation focuses on artworks mostly from the 1970s and 80s, with a few selections by Dean Fleming from the early 1960s and recent paintings by Clark Richert and Robert Swain.

David Richard Gallery is pleased to announce the upcoming presentation, Systemic Pattern Painting: Artists of the Criss-Cross Cooperative that includes artworks by artists: Charles DiJulio, Dean Fleming, Richard Kallweit, Gloria Klein, Marilyn Nelson, Clark Richert, Dee Shapiro, Robert Swain, George Woodman and Mario Yrisarry. The opening reception with several of the artist will be Sunday September 9, 2018 from 1:00 to 6:00 PM and the exhibition will be on view through October 7, 2018.

The gallery will host two panel discussions. The first includes Richard Kallweit, Marilyn Nelson and Clark Richert and will be moderated by Anne Swartz, Professor of Art History, Savannah College of Art and Design on Tuesday evening, September 11 from 7:30 to 8:30 PM. The second panel discussion includes Gloria Klein, Dee Shapiro and Mario Yrisarry, the date will be announced separately. The discussions will be recorded and posted on

A digital catalog will be available online featuring artworks as well as reproductions from the Criss-Cross Art Communications of original essays and interviews from the mid to late 1970s with each of the artists in the exhibition. Recent essays by Clark Richert and Marilyn Nelson will be included as well as an essay by art historian and critic Peter Frank of Los Angeles.

About Systemic Pattern Painting:

Patterns exist in many different disciplines and are ubiquitous in daily life, they can be found in nature, mathematics, architecture, dance and art. What is unique about the patterning from the artists of the Criss-Cross cooperative is their highly technical approaches and rigorous processes. The patterns are detailed, complex and frequently multilayered and range from repeating patterns with regular tessellation to non-periodic patterns that are infinite and never repeat within a single structure. Aesthetically, the artists processes range from highly precise with crisp lines to more painterly approaches that rely on the patterns and color to harmonize and provide structure from a distance.

Systemic pattern painting is predetermined in the artist’s mind, the process is ordered and structured with rules—mostly self-imposed as part of a disciplined process to maintain compositional rigor and continuity, generally involves mathematical counting systems and most frequently with repetition such that patterns emerge. The patterning of the Criss-Cross cooperative is rooted in the grid, use of polygons, a love of fractal geometry and color.

Regarding members of the Criss-Cross cooperative, Marilyn Nelson states that, “They identified with anti-impressionistic, non-minimalistic, non-conceptual works; mechanic and precise techniques; ordered pieces shaped by the mind prior to execution; and those that integrated individual elements systematically, permitting each element to maintain its own identity while serving to comprise the whole”.

About the Criss-Cross Cooperative:

The Criss-Cross cooperative emerged out of the artist community Drop City that was located near Trinidad, Colorado in the southeast corner of the state in the late 1960s. The residents of Drop City were inspired by Allan Kaprow’s “happenings”, Robert Rauschenberg’s and John Cage’s performances and Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic domes. The vector geometry and complex patterns and structures of the domes influenced the artist residents and pattern became an integral part of their art making practices.

Five artists and filmmakers from Drop City, Gene Bernofsky, JoAnn Bernofsky, Richard Kallweit, Charles DiJulio and Clark Richert, founded Criss-Cross Cooperative in 1974 in Boulder. The group later expanded to include filmmaker Fred Worden, painter and print maker Marilyn Nelson from the University of Arkansas and painter Dean Fleming who was a founder of the Libre Artist Community in 1967 and a neighbor of Drop City. Fleming was also a founder of the important Park Place group and gallery in New York in the early 1960s, a collective of like-minded artists interested in space, vector geometry, painting, sculpture and performance in lower Manhattan. Criss-Cross also included painters Gloria Klein, Dee Shapiro, George Woodman, Robert Swain and Mario Yrisarry, all from New York.

An Important component of the cooperative was the publication of the Criss-Cross Art Communications from 1974 to 1980 and curated national and international exhibitions all focused on “systemic patterning” and structure. The publications and exhibitions provided scholarship on these complex and abstract topics as well as a forum for sharing ideas, theories and new works as well as exposing the work of other artists working outside of the cooperative.

About David Richard Gallery:

Since its inception in 2010, David Richard Gallery has produced museum quality exhibitions that feature Post War abstraction in the US. The presentations have addressed specific decades and geographies as well as certain movements and tendencies. While the gallery has long been recognized as an important proponent of post-1960s abstraction—including both the influential pioneers as well as a younger generation of practitioners in this field— in keeping with this spirit of nurture and development the gallery also presents established and very new artists who embrace more gestural and representational approaches to the making of art as well as young emerging artists.

In 2015 David Richard Gallery launched DR Projects to provide a platform for artists of all stripes—international, national, local, emerging and established—to present special solo projects or to participate in unique collaborations or thematic exhibitions. The goal is to offer a fresh look at contemporary art practice from a broad spectrum of artists and presentations. Opening the second location in New York in 2017 exposes the gallery’s artists to new markets, institutions and collectors.

Associated Artist

Associated Exhibitions

Associated News

  • February 3, 2020

  • August 23, 2018

  • September 12, 2018

  • September 13, 2018

  • September 15, 2018

  • September 29, 2018

  • September 17, 2018

News Archive

March 27, 2019
March 16, 2019
July 2, 2017
July 2, 2017
July 2, 2017
July 2, 2017
January 17, 2017
Globalocation: Celebrating 20 Years of Artnauts
J. Willard Marriott Library
The University of Utah, 01/17/2017

The University of Utah’s J. Willard Marriott Library will host the art exhibition Globalocation: Celebrating 20 Years of Artnauts, Jan. 20-March 3.

Artnauts, an art collective formed 20 years ago by George Rivera, professor of art and art history at the University of Colorado, Boulder, consists of 300 global artists who serve as goodwill ambassadors, acknowledging and supporting victims of oppression worldwide. Their creativity has generated over 230 exhibitions across five continents. Five faculty members from the U’s Department of Art and Art History are members of the collective, Sandy Brunvand, Beth Krensky, V. Kim Martinez, Brian Snapp and Xi Zhang.

Globalocation derives from “Globalocational Art” — a concept used by the Artnauts to refer to their exhibitions in international venues. It is the mission of the Artnauts to take art to places of contention, and this anniversary exhibition is a sample of places where they have been and themes they have addressed.

“The Artnauts could not exist without the commitment of the artists in the collective to a common vision of the transformative power of art,” said Rivera. “The Artnauts make their contribution with art that hopefully generates a dialogue with an international community on subjects that are sometimes difficult to raise.”

Krensky, associate department chair of the Art and Art History Department, had the opportunity to travel with Rivera in Chile as part of an Artnauts project, working with mothers who were searching for their children who had mysteriously disappeared during a time of political unrest.

“When I travelled to Chile in 1998, George and I spent an afternoon with the Mothers of the Disappeared, and the meeting changed my life,” said Krensky. “It was from that moment on that I placed a picture of them on my desk to look at every day. I was so moved by what they each had lost — a son, a brother, a father — and yet what remained for them was a deep, deep well of love. They were fierce warriors and stood up to the government to demand the whereabouts and information of the people who had disappeared, but they lived within profound love.”

The 20th anniversary exhibition at the Marriott Library is a retrospective of the traveling works the Artnauts have toured around the globe. The exhibition will be located on level three of the library. The opening reception is open to the public and will be held on Friday, Jan 20, 4-6 p.m. Rivera will speak at 4 p.m.

September 12, 2014
February 15, 2014
January 31, 2014
September 12, 2013
December 18, 2012
September 26, 2012
May 31, 2012
September 21, 2011