Lisa Beck: So-called opposites

Lisa Beck, installation view

“I am attracted to related visual phenomena like positive and negative, pattern and randomness, color and grayscale, flatness and depth, representation and abstraction. I always want to go in different directions at the same time and much of my work has involved trying to find ways to integrate these so-called opposites.”

In her first solo exhibition at Elizabeth Dee Gallery, Lisa Beck presents a new series of paintings that feature two humble geometric forms: the circle and the line. For Beck, simplifying forms multiplies potential meanings. For instance, a line might suggest a path, a divider, a horizon, a floor, or a ceiling. The circles and lines are rendered in vivid color, some with an underpainted layer of metallic aluminum leaf, that gives the images a shimmery appearance, like moonlight over the ocean. But for Beck,who has titled the show “Rising and Falling,” the fascination lies in creating a thoughtful, and melancholic, ambiguity. The paintings depict the moment in which we watch and wait, unsure of what is to come.

Lisa Beck, Elements 5, 2017, aluminum leaf, spray paint, oil paint, and enamel paint on canvas, 48 x 36 inches
Lisa Beck, Elements 3, 2017, aluminum leaf, acrylic paint, oil paint, and enamel paint on canvas, 48 x 36 inches
Lisa Beck, Elements 8, 2017, aluminum leaf, acrylic paint, oil paint, and enamel paint on canvas, 48 x 36 inches

Lisa Beck, Untitled #11, 2017, mixed media, 12 x 9 inches

Lisa Beck, Nearing, 2017, aluminum leaf, acrylic paint, oil paint, and enamel paint on canvas, 24 x 18 inches
Lisa Beck, Elements 9, 2017, aluminum leaf, acrylic paint, oil paint, and enamel paint on canvas, 48 x 36 inches

From the press release: Lisa Beck (American b. 1958) has exhibited worldwide, including seven solo exhibitions at Feature, New York since 1992. Curator Bob Nickas has included Beck in eight shows at various venues, including: Anton Kern Gallery, White Columns, and Martos Galleryk, as well as Rapperswill, Switzerland. Beck recently was the subject of a new publication catalogue from her survey exhibiton at Circuit, Lausanne highlighting her work between 1986-2015. Upcoming exhibitions in 2018 include Doomtown, at the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art; and a solo show at the Suburban, Minneapolis.

Lisa Beck: Rising and Falling,” Elizabeth Dee, Harlem, New York, NY. Through January 20, 2018.

Also on view: “Howard Halle: Return To Graceland, Works from the ’80s and ’90s,” and “Julia Wachtel: Displacement.

Related posts:
Lisa Beck: A Set of Glances, of Extended Duration, Perpetually
What’s so strange at Fredericks & Freiser’s “Strange Abstraction”?

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