I spent the day yesterday in the MoMA archives researching a story about Loren MacIver for the March issue of The Brooklyn Rail, so I’m pleased to see that Holland Cotter reviews MacIver’s current show at the Alexandre Gallery today. MacIver, a self-taught painter who lived in NYC with poet and soulmate Lloyd Frankenberg, died in 1998 at the age of ninety. “Like many non-mystical visionaries, she painted what was in front of her: right there on the kitchen table, or out the studio window. But along with each object she included its aura. A potted crocus, its tiny pink buds as vivid as match flames, seems to exist in an earth-colored mist. Pastries in a bakery shop case glow like so many flares. Antique pots in a museum vitrine brighten and fade in liquid twilight, like microbes on a slide,” Cotter writes. His favorite painting in the show is “Spring Snow” (1958)which he describes beautifully. “An out-the-window image of a city fire escape at dusk in a blizzard. The drifting snow resembles ocean waves; the fire escape bars a door. Beyond them is a ghostly white tree branch, and beyond that the lights next door, dim but warm. Who could ask for more?” Read more.
Tracking proto-feminist Loren MacIver
“Loren MacIver: The Poetry of Objects,” Alexandre Gallery, New York, NY. Through February 29.