Maxwell Davidson Gallery presents Seven Decades of Optic Art, an exhibition about the rise of a genre and its effects on contemporary art.


Featuring work by Op-art progenitors - some of the most influential Modern artists of the 20th century - as well as many contemporary artists investigating the application of Op in the art world today.

Starting with work from the 1950s, Seven Decades of Optic Art, includes work by Richard Anuszkiewicz, Antonio Asis, Carlos Cruz-Diez, Ghost of a Dream, Sam Messenger, Kevin Osmond, Jesus Rafael Soto, Julian Stanczak, Luis Tomasello, Mary Ann Unger, Victor Vasarely, and Sanford Wurmfeld.

Though Vasarely started working on what would be considered Op-art works as early as the 1940s, his "kinetic images" and black and white paintings that made him a household name, did not gain renown until the 1950s. The term "Op art" was derived from a show of Julian Stanczak's work in 1964. Shortly thereafter, the Museum of Modern Art in New York held an exhibition titled The Responsive Eye, a group show focusing on Op-art, its impact on contemporary art, and its place in art history.

Seven Decades of Optic Art is the final show at Maxwell Davidson Gallery's current space at 724 Fifth Avenue, New York City. After more than 10 years in its Midtown location, Maxwell Davidson Gallery will move to a new, bi-level gallery at 521 West 26th Street in Chelsea.