Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Chelsea / LES - Flowers, Men and Patterns.

Inka Essenhigh at Miles McEnery. Gallery Link

She reconstructs the rhythms in scroll painting. There is also a feeling of early animation cells.
Reflecting the Daoist belief that all nature is animate, while acknowledging the slim margin between scroll painting and cartoon.

At DC Moore, Robert Kushner painting on embroidered Indian fabrics called dupattas, in his new exhibition (he also exhibited last year). Gallery Link 
The concept of over and under, applied on fabric, can be exciting territory (another detail three below). 
Also at DC Moore: Katia Santibanez's long-standing exploration of science and nature generates increasingly complex systems. Gallery Link 

Kushner's fabric layers (detail).
Stepping back and forward in a detail of early Al Held painting at Cheim and Reid.  Troweled on in lavish abundance, the earthen color mixes create a topographical as well as pictorial space. 
Gorgeous, earthen hues move from the flat of the linen at top to mountainous swells.
Texture and layer is color.
Across, top to bottom, back to front.

The dancing rhythms of color generate a visual roller coaster that foregrounds Held's late mural paintings. 
And the combinations are delicious.
In the back room, larger, more organized scale--but less travel (not much less). An earlier portion of this work (when Held was still living in Paris) is on view at Nathalie Karg. Gallery Link

Mernet Larsen at James Cohan. A series of details tilting the iPhone  at various angles reveal how odd and tricky her reverse perspectives are in the new show, Situation Rooms. 

Gallery Link

Included for contrast and a view to her development since, Larsen's iconic faculty meeting paintings. How well I remember these rooms (Larsen hired me at USF) and many of the protagonists.

I could not stop staring at the arm. So succinct, so odd. And the orange highlight beneath! Not to mention the wall slipping away and forward simultaneously.

Reverse perspective, long a trope of Larsen's from her love of Japanese painting.

Love the seat--he's solid enough to unite with the structure.

Keltie Ferris. Gallery Link

Beautiful textural shifts between impasto marks and wash.

Oddly casual and constructed at the same time, these paintings are elegantly finished, but they push.
Ferris' drawings offer a thesis for the show upon entering the gallery.
Jane Freilicher. This show made me realize how her work helped me survive graduate school in Chicago after moving from LA in winter. First I began covering my paintings in white then collaging and tearing the landscape into pieces, shards, or marks in small paintings. I looked at these works a lot in reproduction.
Such simple, elegant, coherent paintings. Here's the: Gallery Link

The way the pattern on the vase literally draws a line through the painting--playing with the edge of the vase on right, heightened by the dark behind...delicious!

In tandem with Katz and Porter, Freilicher, in painting the urban view, creates a domestic NY genre
Throughout the paintings, despite their sweeping interiors
and exterior views,
Insist on subtle geometries to hold loose, casual paint application in check.
Carroll Dunham, in a knockout show that synthesizes his work from the last few exhibitions with real ferocity. Gallery Link
Encapsulating the orbs in earlier paintings filled with smears of paint and pencil notations, into body parts.
I will fix this and the following details, but you can still see the tight structure and variation within the blacks...

Fin de Siecle
Yet we remain human, vulnerable.
Terry Winters at Matthew Marks (24th St.). Always wonderful to see those craggy worked surfaces, made with hogs hair rounds. Gallery Link

Maren Hassenger at Susan Inglett, a stark, timely and elegant show.
Gallery Link 

Newspaper clippings in an enormous Afro.
Shocking, beautiful, stops you.
Instanbul-based artist Suzan Batu at the Phatory on east 9th St. Paintings woven with marks. Gallery Link


The color combinations in her work, the way the paint is put together in optically charged, flat surfaces  feel vibrant and exciting. The show's conceit of fabrics from a Turkish store , the only available though she and her peers longed for American fashion. speaks to upcoming trade agreements and the global flow of goods--or not.
Suzan Batu. Her paintings are almost like maps, as well as fabric scraps.