April 4, 2008

Eye-popping, snarling James Siena

In the NY Sun, David Cohen writes that the quality of line in James Siena's new figurative grotesques relates to the quilt- or lattice-like grids and labyrinths of classic Siena pictures. "Not just formally but also in terms of their own morphology: The line seems as subservient to algorithm as depiction, even though they work depictively. In 'First Old Man' (2006), for instance, there is more a sense that the figure emerged from a maze-like algorithm that went awry than that the eye-popping, snarling figure was himself the prime mover of the linear form meandering about the page. And yet this colon-like form, doubling back and forth on itself, perfectly describes the loose gums and folding flesh of a wrinkled geriatric....Works in his new genres exude all the excitement of thematic departure, but the most intense pleasures in this show occur when Mr. Siena is on familiar ground — whether this is a result of this viewer's comfort level or the artist's is a matter of conjecture. Read more.

"James Siena," Pace Wildenstein, New York, NY. March 28— April 26
Related post:
Show of the week: James Siena At Pace Wildenstein

1 comments:

Couldn't agree more -- this show is amazing. His line and color is mesmerizing, and the range of work comes from somebody who's absolutely free to wander, and constrained by time.

To advertise on TWO COATS OF PAINT via Nectar Ads, click HERE.