3.18.2009

The Fairs: Glop Art

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Armory Week: Salvage Operation
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Armory Show: Phillip Allen at Kerlin Gallery, Dublin


Using my my trusty maxim, Two's a coincidence; three's a trend, I'd say we've got a trendlet. Call it "Glop Art"--paint that's slathered, plopped, squeezed and smeared. The paint companies must be so pleased.

My favorite artist in this genre is the British painter Phillip Allen, work shown above and here. I'm wild about his unlikely combination of linear geometry and schmear, which I find visually and viscerally satisfying. (The love child of Thomas Nozkowski and Scott Richter?) At first you try to connect the two disparate elements, as if the surface has been scraped to reveal the painting at the center. But no, that's not the process at all. There's no logic to why a geometric painting would require this buildup of paint at its borders, and that's part of what attracts me: the mystery--no, the oddity--of it. The other part is, damn, I just dig them.
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But the two artists artist shown below, Allison Schulnick and Kim Dorland, not so much. Sure Schulnick's solo at Mike Weiss Gallery a few months ago reportedly sold out, and I hear the sales were huge at Mark Moore's booth at Pulse. I'm not swayed. What's the opposite of 'love it'? A few booths away from Mark Moore (and let me say, the paintings themselves were beautifully installed), the Angell Gallery was showing big, sludgy paintings by Kim Dorland.
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Here, see for yourself.


Pulse: Allison Schulnick at Mark Moore Gallery, Santa Monica
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Collectors snapped up Shulnick's work. Chris Bors reports in Artinfo that within hours of the opening, 12 of the 16 paintings had sold. I guess I'm just not cut out to be a collector. Other subjects, besides monkeys, are clowns and flowers.
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Then there's Kim Dorland, at the Angell Gallery, Toronto. Actually, I kind of liked the surfaces up close; it was the images themselves that repulsed me.
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I don't usually write negative comments--I just ignore what I don't like--but these paintings pushed a button. I like being challenged, and I have changed my mind about some difficult work, but I just can't quiet my inner voice here, which keeps going "Eeeew."
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Pulse: Kim Dorland at Angell Gallery, Toronto
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Detail, above, and full view on far wall of Sad Girl, 2008, oil on panel, 72 x 72 inches
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7 comments:

tackad said...

These are two of my favorite artists. The thing about Kim Dorland's work is the funky colors and perfect perspective draw you right on in to off-hand moments in everyday life. Then he slaps you in the face, with his paint slathering, to wake you up and remind you that it's all just paint. Wonderful stuff. But I think he's been ill advised and is taking a bad, wrong turn with his "portraits". Hopefully he'll snap out of it.

Zachary Brown said...

I've just been impressed by phillip allen.

Sky Pape said...

I'd add to that bunch Leslie Wayne (with Jack Shainman Gallery -- she had a piece at the Armory Show). Her work is quite luscious indeed.

Your description of Phillip Allen as the love child of Thomas Nozkowski and Scott Richter cracked me up. What's not to love about that? Somehow I regretfully missed seeing that work, but the Armory was if anything, overwhelming.

Jason Messinger said...

Another two artists who 'use the paint up' are Joey Wozniak:
http://www.joeywozniak.com

and Darrell Roberts
http://darrell-roberts.com/photo_album5.html

Both are Chicago Artists, who have been using up the paint tubes for many years. Mr. Wozniak confesses his process ends up 'throwing more paint away than ends up on the canvas"

Anonymous said...

One painter way ahead of this trend is Dennis Hollingsworth-
http://www.dennishollingsworth.us/

tackad said...

Yes, Dennis Hollingsworth is amazing. You know how you've got your star atheletes ? Well he's a star painter who gets it right every time. Very unusual palette and yet somehow it always works.
In the last year he's tended to get a little off track(IMO) but if you ever get a chance, go back through all his archives and travel around the world and be a part of his life . . . . .
Well worth the time.

Anonymous said...

our tastes must be exactly opposite - I thought Allison Schulnick had the best work at both pulse and scope. something for everyone, I guess