May 10, 2008

NY Times Art in Review: Kannemeyer, Quabeck, Bessone, Nilsson, Dodge

"Anton Kannemeyer: The Haunt of Fears," Jack Shainman, New York, NY. Through May 17. Ken Johnson: "A Tintin-style painting for a Bittercomix cover shows a happy white man on safari in an antique car driven by a black servant. The car is filled with boxes labeled Texaco and Halliburton. As a machine-gun-toting black soldier stands guard, and poor black natives with amputated limbs look on, the car rolls across a plain littered with skeletons and pools of blood. In these and many other works Mr. Kannemeyer’s semiotic sophistication, graphic ingenuity and X-ray political vision work together in morally rousing harmony."

"Cornelius Quabeck: Critical Mess," Friedrich Petzel Gallery, New York, NY. Through May 17. Roberta Smith: "From an American viewpoint this work stirs together the appropriated images of David Salle, Richard Philips and Martin Kippenberger and the collage narratives of the Los Angeles artist Alexis Smith. They have an attractive nonchalance, but they could have been made 20 years ago. It would be nice to think that this shortcoming has caused Mr. Quabeck to name his debut 'Critical Mess,' and that he intends to straighten it out."

"Amy Bessone: With Friends Like These..." Salon 94 and Salon 94 Freemans, New York, NY. Through May 23. Roberta Smith: "The absorption of the tactics of set-up photography by representational painting has a long, tangled and often retrograde history. The Los Angeles painter Amy Bessone, who was born in New York in 1970 and studied art in Paris and Amsterdam in the early 1990s, gives it a few skillful twists without adding anything new."

"Gladys Nilsson: Recent Watercolors," Luise Ross, New York, NY. Through May 31. Ken Johnson: "Her pictures might be read as allegories of consciousness: mindscapes dominated by large, relatively slow-moving ideas — the big women — with nattering, peripheral thoughts, fantasies and anxieties carrying on like unruly children in the background. Informed by such disparate sources as Indian miniature paintings, MirĂ³ and Disney, Ms. Nilsson’s works conjure infectious states of euphoric delirium."

"Tomory Dodge," CRG, New York, NY. Through May 23. Karen Rosenberg: "The young Los Angeles artist Tomory Dodge emerged around 2004 as a painter of prismatic, quasi-abstract landscapes based on the California desert. Mr. Dodge has removed most traces of representation from his latest paintings, the best of which bring to mind the explosive brushwork of Joan Mitchell and the squeegeed surfaces of Gerhard Richter. In the process he has also obliterated the sense of place that makes his work so compelling."

Read all the reviews here.

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