September's Bounty: Color, Surface, Gesture

While hard-edge paintings were the subject of the previous post, here we look at surface and gesture --the lusciously messy and the rigorously sensual--from the Lower East Side to Chelsea and back.

Stephen Maine: Installation view of New Paintings at Hionas Gallery, with P15-0720, 2015, acrylic on canvas, 100 x 80 inches, in the foreground

We start with Stephen Maine at Hionas Gallery on the the LES. Two large canvases occupied the small front gallery, while smaller paintings were installed in several additional back rooms. All of the paintings have a kind of printerly surface. That's because Maine has made them in a printerly manner, adding color in successive layers with plates or stamps made from such unexpected materials as plywood and carpeting. The kiss of the paint-charged "stamp" on the surface embraces process and chance, resulting in a sensuous imprint that reveals as much as it conceals. Maine's shimmery, sari-colored palette--complementary tints or highly saturated analogous hues--are thrillingly retinal.

Though the show came down earlier this month, You can read more in The Brooklyn Rail and The New Criterion 

Detail of P15-0720

P15-0704, 2015, acrylic on canvas, 80 x 64 inches
Detail below

Installation of 10 small paintings in a smaller space within the gallery 


Dona Nelson: Installation view of New Paintings at Thomas Erben Gallery in Chelsea, with Ribbed Red, 2015, acrylic on canvas (two-sided), 78 x 83 inches, foreground; photo from the gallery website

Dona Nelson continues her ambitious exploration of two-sided paintings at the Thomas Erben Gallery in Chelsea. Nelson is fearless in her approach, splashing, dripping, slashing and stitching the works, which she sets into a metal stand that allows both sides to be viewed in the round as one would view sculpture. 

The exhibition is up through October 31.

Above and below
The Old Apple Tree, 2105, acrylic, acrylic mediums and cheesecloth on canvas 

Above and below
Coins in a Fountain, 2015, acrylic and acrylic medium on canvas

Black Points, 2015, acrylic and acrylic mediums on canvas; one side of a two-sided painting


Dan Christensen: Installation view of Dan Christensen: Retrospective at Berry Campbell Gallery in Chelsea

Dan Christensen, who died in 2007, is here given a museum-quality retrospective by Christine Berry and Martha Campbell in their newly enlarged space on 24th Street. The painter was as much a gesturalist as a color field painter, and a minimalist one at that. However one may describe the work, his handling of color was a brilliant constant.

The exhibition is up through October 17.

Couvade, 1979,  acrylic on canvas, 74 x 81 inches
Detail below


Keltie Ferris: Installation view of Paintings and Body Prints at Mitchell-Innes and Nash

Cleopatra, 2015, acrylic and oik on canvas, 96 x 130 inches

Keltie Ferris's new paintings at Mitchell-Innes & Nash in Chelsea feature a kind of macro pixelation that suggests they were computer generated or, perhaps, woven. There's also geometry to the compositions, and a strong sense of landscape. There's a lot going on. Up close you can see discrete brush strokes that make up the pixelated image, but there are also whole areas that are airbrushed. Her color is strong. Her compositions have muscle. I want to like them, but they don't quite flip my switch.

The exhibition is up through October 17.

Marksman, 2015, acrylic and oil on canvas, 72 x 60 inches
Detail below


Installation view: Alicia McCarthy at Jack Hanley Gallery on the LES

Provisional messiness doesn't flip my switch either, yet I really respond to Alicia McCarthy's work at Jack Hanley. She has a way with color and grid interlacement. I first saw her work at Pulse in Miami about six years ago. The weave paintings then were only about 24 x 20 but they were pulsing with power; you could almost see them expand and contract. The addition in this show of chromosomic X's unleashes a whole new subtext: women in paint. Or am I reading too much into them?

The show has closed, but you can read what both Roberta and Jerry have to say about it.

Installation view with details below. The paintings are untitled, mixed-media works that include colored pencil, latex paint and spray paint

Untitled above, with an installation shot below to give you some dimensional context (it's the painting at the far end of the wall)


Nancy Natale said...

Very vibrant and colorful work from these shows! Thanks a lot for posting, Joanne.

Linh Cinder said...


Pam Wallace said...

Thank you, Joanne! Time to head to the city.

CMC said...

Really love this work by Dona Nelson, "The Old Apple Tree".......Thanks for posting, Joanne.

kathy cantwell said...

Wonderful. Love them all. Thanks for sharing.