Contributed by Sharon Butler / Andrea Belag is best known for making dark, stormy abstractions in which fat, translucent brushstrokes swoop and twist around large-scale canvases. In her solo at Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects, on view through October 15, the new paintings seem to have a sunnier disposition. She has replaced large canvases with midsize wooden panels, picked up smaller brushes, and ramped up her chroma opacity. What the paintings have lost in physicality they have gained in freehweeling narrative impulse.
In older work, the deep color triggered an inchoate emotional response, but now simple shapes and lines, truncated brushstrokes rendered in lively color, float on the picture plane. Many of the new paintings leave large sections of unpainted panel visible, creating a shallower space for her whimsical figures to inhabit. The work no longer seems like a manifestation of murky interiority, but has become more outward looking and in the process acquired greater clarity. The paintings are refreshingly different than the old work–like the calm, clear light that comes after a storm.
“Andrea Belag: Ghost Writer,” Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects, New York, NY. Through October 15, 2017.