Amanda Church: The contemporary gaze

Contributed by Adam Simon / One of the under-appreciated aspects of art viewing is the way that a given work establishes a certain relationship with a viewer. Mark Rothko famously claimed that “lots of people break down and cry when confronted with my pictures.” He may have been trying to fend off a formalist reading … read more… “Amanda Church: The contemporary gaze”

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William Powhida’s inquisition

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / For a while it looked as though William Powhida might be painting himself into an existential corner. His mission was to sensitize his audience to the hypocritical churn of the art market – to the reality that what made producing something putatively nobler and loftier than money viable was in fact … read more… “William Powhida’s inquisition”

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Caroline Wells Chandler: Pied Piper of weirdness

Contributed by Jennifer Coates / I met Caroline Wells Chandler when he was an MFA student at Yale, and we immediately connected in a lunatic mind-meld way. Together, our imaginations sparked, and last year we collaborated on “Electric Mayhem,” a two-person exhibition at Crush Curatorial inspired by the band on The Muppet Show. For his current solo at Mrs., on … read more… “Caroline Wells Chandler: Pied Piper of weirdness”

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Emilia Olsen: Visions of paint and flesh

Contributed by Katie Hector / Emilia Olsen’s paintings, on view in “There is Another Sky” at Arts + Leisure through May 12,  spark curiosity. Channeling vulnerability through evocative subject matter, the artist leads viewers down a rabbit hole in pursuit of a mysterious female figure who meanders in and out of the picture plane. The woman, her face … read more… “Emilia Olsen: Visions of paint and flesh”

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Interview: Delphine Hennelly at Carvalho Park

Contributed by Sangram Majumdar / A few weeks ago, on a crisp Sunday afternoon, I met Delphine Hennelly at Carvalho Park where her paintings are on display in “History Lessons,” a two-person show that includes woven pieces by Mimi Jung.  We talked about the performative nature of painting, the importance of open narratives, and how, sometimes, … read more… “Interview: Delphine Hennelly at Carvalho Park”

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Vincent Desiderio: Painting as a theoretical vanguard

Contributed by Barbara Kerstetter / Vincent Desiderio is a powerful, unique voice in the contemporary art world. His paintings have commanded an international following for more than two decades. Born in Philadelphia in 1955, Desiderio graduated from Haverford College, where he studied painting and art history. Today he is a senior critic at the New York Academy of Art and … read more… “Vincent Desiderio: Painting as a theoretical vanguard”

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Dana Schutz, jogging alongside the train wreck

Contributed by Zach Seeger / In her new work on view at Petzel through February 23, Dana Schutz finds herself wielding the brush of post recession rapture painting, a condition of exhaustive, Beckett-like inevitability where the steady drip of bad news informs our social media feeds. She imagines the world outside her studio, empathizing with the toilers of pathological banality while depicting … read more… “Dana Schutz, jogging alongside the train wreck”

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Farley Aguilar’s screamingly urgent figurative paintings

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Farley Aguilar’s paintings, on view at Lyles & King, are based on vintage photographs of 1920s and ‘30s seaside beauty pageants and images of female Nazi collaborators having their heads shaved after World War II. The contrast is jarring at first but fits into an insightfully integrated sense of powerlessness … read more… “Farley Aguilar’s screamingly urgent figurative paintings”

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Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Call it soulfulness

Contributed by Matt Mitchell / Reviewers have compulsively apprehended Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s loving images of dark-skinned people as manifestations of black identity politics, despite the artist’s insistence that those issues are not central to her work. And, in fact, her paintings can yield some penetrating insights about the new figuration when the viewer looks beyond race. On view … read more… “Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Call it soulfulness”

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Elena Sisto: A new kind of freedom

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Elena Sisto’s new paintings, on view at Bookstein Projects through October 27, focus smartly on hair. Lively thick brushstrokes snake around diminutive, brightly colored faces, conjuring the stylized coifs of Gustav Klimt and the Vienna Secession. For Klimt, who was working in Vienna when Freud began hypothesizing about the power of … read more… “Elena Sisto: A new kind of freedom”

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