7.18.2012

Color: Field and Form, Part 2

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In this post I'm looking at construction, physical and compositional. Carlos Estrada-Vega and Gregory Johnston build their paintings from multiple elements. Harriet Korman constructs hers from geometric compositional elements, while Max Gimblett creates a flat painting on a sculptural form.
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Carlos Estrada-Vega, Building a Painting
Thatcher Projects.
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Detail of Africa's Sorrow, shown below in installation

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Carlos Estrada-Vega, whose work opens this post, builds his paintings block by painted block. There's a small magnet at the back of each block, and Estrada-Vega creates grids by the placement of the blocks. It's not an interactive painting--he places them as he wants them--but the manner of construction is sculptural (also a bit like quiltmaking).

Read more here.
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Installation with Tanganyika, left, and Africa's Sorrow, each 2011; oleopasto, wax, pigment, oil, limestone, 68 x 68 inches
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Tanganyika with detail below
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The imperfection of the grid and the surface of each element greate a gestalt of movement and richness, a kind of maximalist minimalism
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Mariquita, 2012; wax, limestone dust, oleopasto, oil on wood, metal backing, 17.5 x 15.5
This image from the gallery website
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Gregory Johnston, Superleggera
Stephen Haller Gallery, May 17 - June 23
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Installation view upon entering with Übermenschamorfati, enamel on aluminum plates, 36 x 36 inches

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With gleaming enamel surfaces on aluminum plates, Gregory Johnston has referenced both racing car colors and the geometric neoplasticism of DeStijl--Mondrian on speed, you might say. His specific sectional arrangement consists of a vertically divided central field sandwiched between bands of color. Larger paintings retain the format but increase the number of elements. These are coolly elegant paintings whose installation--frameless, hovering slightly away from the wall--has a lightness that complements the title and meaning of the work (superleggera is "super light" in Italian, a  reference to the kind of automotive construction that produces a vehicle built for velocity).
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See more here.
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Installation view on left wall of the main gallery
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Swinging around to the right, with Bahamagelbrossofioranomintschwarz (you can make out color names here in German and Italian) and Cogito Ergo Sum.
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Harriet Korman, New Paintings
Lennon Weinberg, March 1 - April 14
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Converge, 2011, oil on canvas, 40 x 60 inches
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In Harriet Korman's paintings there's a lot going on with an economy of means. The brushwork is minimal but the color is rich. The color is saturated but it's flat. The shapes are simple but the geometry is complex. The geometry sets up a dynamic that makes the viewer dance--a pull-you-in-push-you-back two-step-- that engenders physical engagement while providing a retinal workout as well.
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Installation view of the right wall, leading to Converge under the skylight in the back
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Detail of Converge
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. . . ..Max Gimblett,  The Holy Grail
Gary Snyder Gallery, March 1 - April 7

Treasure Island, 2011; acrylic and vinyl polymers, epoxy, metal leaf on wood panel, 60 x 60 inches
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Gimblett was a surprise for me as I was unfamilar with his work. My bad. Really, my bad, because the artist, born in 1935, has had a long career as an exhibiting artist. This show at Gary Snder was an eye popper, especially the wall of quatrefoils below, a visually satisfying walk through abstraction with lyrical, expressive and geometric strains; with elements of  Pop and even minimalism.

Installation view containing all the works shown here

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Above: Inner Sanctuary, 2011
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Below: Lord Ganesha, 2012
 Both acrylic and vinyl polymers, epoxy and metal leaf, 25 x 25 inches
These three individual Gimblett images from the artist's website


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Next week: Charline Von Heyl

8 comments:

Susan Schwalb said...

I am surprised that you never saw Max Gimblett's work. He used to show with Thatcher Projects. Back then the work was more reductive as I remember it but with gold leaf and black. Hope you are enjoying the cape. We go in August.

Ben Stansfield said...

wow, I'm really enjoying this series of posts.
the only painter I've seen in person is Estrada-Vega, here in Toronto at Galerie Lausberg. FAN-tastic. it feels like a combination of frosting, crayons and, and, I don't know what. There's a toy-like element to it, but it doesn't feel childish or un-thought.
Thanks Joanne11

annell said...

I love each image you have selected to show! Thanks so much for the post.

Anonymous said...

Took some of my students to the Harriet Korman show. They loved it.

Tamar said...

Wonderful group of exhibits.
Max Gimblett's work has great sense of play. Thanks for revisiting these shows with your post Joanne.

Christine said...

Great post to read this morning in the grey rain. Now NEED to see Estrada-Vega's work in person. Gimblett's work has a playful, whimsical feel. Would like to see all of these artists work in person.

Nancy Natale said...

Great post, Joanne! I think Max Gimblett is my fave because of his exploration of various painting styles and that quatrefoil shape - different and eye catching! And I like that he has had a long career although his work would fit right in alongside any of the younger set's recent production.

Mary Zeran said...

Great picks Joanne! I had the chance to see Carlos Estrada-Vega work in person last month in Chicago. It had this fantastic sculptural quality, and the color was outstanding. I agree with all the others, the playfulnes of Max Gimblett's work is pretty great!