Fox and King, Knigin, and Heppenheimer All at Guild Hall

A slate of new exhibitions will open at Guild Hall on Sunday with a special reception from 3 to 5 p.m.

An examination of the work of Connie Fox and William King will lead a slate of new exhibitions opening at Guild Hall on Sunday with a special reception from 3 to 5 p.m. Serving as guest curator for “Connie Fox and William King: An Artist Couple” is Gail Levin, a professor of art history at the City University of New York, author of many books and monographs on artists, and a contributor to The East Hampton Star. She is also the author of the exhibition catalog essay and will interview Ms. Fox preceding the reception at 2 p.m.

Also opening on Sunday will be “Michael Knigin: The Holocaust and Anne Frank” and a selection of works by William S. Heppenheimer, the 2014 winner of top honors at the Guild Hall members show.

As the title of the Fox and King show suggests, this presentation will focus on the artists as a long-time couple and how their relationship influenced and nurtured their work. In addition, the influence of place will be an important theme, with works inspired by their visits to Sammy’s Beach and friends from the neighborhood such as Cindy Sherman. 

On view will be paintings and drawings by Ms. Fox and sculptures, chairs, and works on paper by Mr. King, who died last year. Dr. Levin called the show “an intimate look at artworks that reflect the relationship of an artist couple that were integral to this community.” Parallels are made between other notable artistic couples such as Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner, Elaine and Willem de Kooning, and James Brooks and Charlotte Park, while the exhibition will include Mr. King’s portraits of contemporary artist couples such as John Hardy and Joan Semmel and Eric Fischl and April Gornik.

The couple met more than three decades ago when each came to play fiddle in Audrey Flack’s band, the Art Attacks. By that time, each had been married previously and were mature artists. They worked alone in separate studios but shared their ideas and interests. Both admired Marcel Duchamp and incorporated homages to the Dadaist in their work both in traditional mediums and performative ways, such as cross-dressing for costume parties.

Mr. Knigin had a long and eclectic artistic career before his death from lung cancer in 2011. One element  was a series of works inspired by the Holocaust and one of its most famous victims, Anne Frank. His interest was sparked during a 1974 trip to Israel where he established a lithographic and silkscreen studio for the Jerusalem Foundation. After meeting several survivors there, he began sketching them. In addition he began examining the Holocaust archives at the Israel Museum, where he became engaged with the story of Anne Frank. The exhibition contains some of the 150 works that Mr. Knigin completed in that series. It was organized by Joan Kraisky, his wife and an artist herself.

Mr. Heppenheimer’s work was given top honors by Robert Storr, who is dean of the Yale School of Art. This is his first solo museum exhibition. His work has been influenced by Op Art, Victor Vasarely, and Bridget Riley, and his mature style features acrylic paintings on boards that often have been shaped or carved in a sculptural way. His show was organized by Stephanie de Troy Miller.

These exhibitions will remain on view through the end of the year.