Another Yuskavage show in NYC

A few years ago in the NY Times, Ken Johnson wrote that Lisa Yuskavage’s paintings were sly, soft-porn fantasies of pneumatic women in hazes of auto-erotic reverie. “Some will say that she is subversively toying with the male gaze; others, noting the melting light in her pictures, that she is mainly a fine painter. Still others might read her overheated style as a spoof of a certain Old World painterly kitsch. Underlying all that is the daring exploration — at once carnal, mystical and funny — of forbidden zones of feminine experience and desire. It all makes an exhilarating, mysteriously ambiguous visual poetry.” Is it completely uncool to say I hate these paintings? I know they’re really well painted, but…

Art Observed covers the recent opening of Lisa Yuskavage’s second solo show with David Zwirner. Check out the James Kalm Report here.

Lisa Yuskavage,” David Zwirner, New York, NY. through March 28.


  1. thank you for saying this. I do not hate them, but unanimity is disconcerting; makes me wonder if someone is biting their tongue.

  2. Hi Sharon, I love the way Robert Storr categorized Yuskavage’s works when he put her in his Site Santa Fe show in 2004. It was a show focused on the grotesque and it fits — what she’s painting is really grotesques. I have never liked Yuskavage’s paintings — and re technique, really, if you put a lot of yellow on any painting it will look luminous — but I find that if I consider them coming out of a tradition focused on the extreme weird outer edges of culture I can at least deal. (Goya, Grosz, Gober, Currin, Saul…) The images on Art Observed show Yuskavage moving from soft to hard porn. I guess it was inevitable.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *