Alexander writes: "Working with aspects of observed landscape as his starting point, Hatton builds abstract compositions comprised of many layers of shapes and spaces -- beautiful contrasts of linear and planar dynamics laid out in juicy scumbled color. The paintings evolve and intensify through constant shifts and revisions, ultimately coalescing to a state of ecstatic presence -- a place of deep painterly integration."
Alteronce Gumby conducts an extensive oral history interview with painter Stanley Whitney.
Whitney comments: "... my big goal.[was that] I wanted to open the work up—not relying on the color, but on structure. I thought that Color Field artists were weak with their structure. And the color in those days was weak too. They used flat color right out of the jar or the tube, like Stella. But I didn’t want to give up color and touch—colors like Veronese’s or Courbet’s, or de Kooning’s sensuousness with oil paint. I was interested in how color and touch go hand in hand. The color changes with the touch—it’s a different color if you change the weight, or the amount of paint, or its viscosity. It’s much more nuanced. I was looking for a way that I could have all these things in one painting."
Yau writes: "[Judith Russi] Kirshner gets to the heart of Fish’s paintings when she advances that the artist’s 'close focus allows her subjects to become unhinged from their referents, to become inexplicable.' I would further advance that in reaching the 'inexplicable,' Fish exposes most realism as a devolution into a style, demonstrating that close looking – which she shares with such artists as Dan Douke, Peter Dreher, Catherine Murphy and Sylvia Plimack-Mangold – can supersede style (or branding) and become both an examination and a translation of attention. It is this quality of scrutiny – of looking with such focused intensity that the commonplace things in the world become mysterious – that I find compelling. Fish is able to revisit the familiar in paint so that it moves closer to its original state of incomprehensibility."
Jeffrey Collins photo blogs a visit to Ralph Humphrey: Conveyance at Garth Greenan Gallery, New York, on view through May 16, 2015.
The gallery press release notes: "The exhibition focuses on the Conveyance paintings, a singularly important, emotionally fraught body of work, created between 1974 and 1977. The paintings—hulking masses of casein and modeling paste in blacks, blues, and purples—often loosely resemble actual objects, like packages or containers. But, what do they contain? Ostensibly, they are vessels for Humphrey’s emotions, his life experiences and ideas about painting. Their textured surfaces simultaneously attract and repel, even as their dimensionality literally forces viewers into the objects’ space."
James Kalm visits an exhibition of works by Mara Held, Margrit Lewczuk and Meg Lipke at David Findlay Jr. Gallery, New York, on view through May 9, 2015.
Kalm notes that these three painters have "achieved unique visions through independent approaches, to not just formal issues like color, line and shape, but who've also experimented with unusual materials and techniques. Despite their differences or similarities, they nonetheless represent a broad cross section of contemporary organic abstraction."
In a new video, artist Katharina Grosse discusses the use of color in her work. Katharina Grosse: The Smoking Kid will be on view at Johann König Gallery, Berlin from May 2 - June 21, 2015.
Grosse comments: "...color is such an very, very important spatial feature in my work in relationship to the crystallized and built and materialized world that is part of what I do when I paint in space. I like this anarchic potential of color. I see it very clearly that color is actually taking away the boundary of the object, so there is no subject/object relationship any more. So I think that's maybe what color has the potential to make us think."
Jennifer Samet interviews painter Jason Stopa on the occasion of his exhibition Double Trouble at Hionas Gallery, New York, on view through April 25, 2015.
Stopa observes: "At the end of the day I am most interested in [the paintings] being read as formal images. I am less interested in images that are solely based on ideas. I do not accept the idea that language prescribes how we are supposed to see a thing. I think it is the opposite. When you go back in history, language comes out of the visual. It comes out of people making marks — symbols that become metaphors, allegories, narratives. I think that we understand and respond to things first on a sensory and somatic level. Then we place conceptual and philosophical ideas on what we have seen."
Butler writes: "Halley’s strict visual language is clear enough and his political underpinnings are well documented. Yet his nine enormous paintings, with the shifts in the shapes, sizes, and configuration of their three primary geometric elements, also seem to embed a subtle narrative about his personal confrontation and accommodation of the political and social evolution his paintings more overtly reflect. So perhaps the most remarkable achievement of Halley’s work is its seamless fusion of political and personal content. His formalism pulses with life itself."
Sultan writes: "Bannard's color is unique and surprising. In the exhibition ... there are pinks and warm reds and cool greens, and all colors confound expectations with their pleasurable seriousness. After all...pink? When I think of a great painter using pink, Philip Guston comes to mind; in his works pink becomes a subversive color. Bannard's pink isn't brash and saturated, but subtle; it looks like a mixed hue. The circle sits solidly in its field, perfectly balanced, slightly above the midpoint of a rectangle slightly taller than square. The pink becomes transcendent."
Garwood notes that "Simonian demonstrates a genius for color, texture, and the exploration of spatial conundrums. Twenty canvases, worked in acrylic, range in size from a mere eight by ten inches to as much as six foot by five with subject matter that cycles between categories of comparable breadth. There are what I’d describe as optical-illusion still lifes, domestic interiors, travel theme — on earth and in space, and nature studies. It’s a roomy, mixed bag of themes... Simonian’s paintings ... knit luscious pictorial fields that tease cognition, along with the senses."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.