Goodrich writes that "the installation handsomely pairs [Berding's paintings] according to their internal dynamics. The diagonals emerging from the background tapestry of brushstrokes in one canvas mirror the angles in another; the somewhat centripetal rhythms of a third echo those of its neighbor. Viewing them together, one gets a strong sense of a distinct temperament. The reworked surfaces suggest a wry, hard-fought romanticism, less about singular expressions than about the sheer eternal struggle with material paint"
Halasz writes; "For most artists, a 'late style' comes as the final fillip. With Friedel Dzubas, it represents the third stage of an evolution that may be viewed in terms of Hegelian dialectics. The first stage, or thesis, is the Dzubas style of the 1950s, marked by the energy and dynamism common to so many gestural abstractionists of that period. The antithesis comes along in the 1960s, when — in the words of Barbara Rose — Dzubas 'cleaned up and emptied out his canvases.' Instead of many active small shapes, the artist focused on a just a few, large and superbly calm ones. The final stage, or synthesis, occurred in the 1970s, and lasted right through to Dzubas’s death in 1994. The dynamism of the 1950s combined with the detachment of the 1960s in Olympian canvases of increasing scale distinguished by the artist’s unique stylistic device, a feathery spectrum of color."
Yau writes: "It is in the painting itself that Burckhardt, who was born in 1964, distinguishes himself from other abstract artists of his generation. Rather than relying on a particular or signature process, vocabulary, message or aesthetic justification (which is what 'provisional painting' has predictably become), he discovers the painting through what can only be called trial and error. He introduces an image into the work, overlaps it with something else, covers nearly everything over and starts again. While one sees the evidence of earlier stages peeking through many of his paintings, Burckhardt doesn’t fetishize his pentimenti. He isn’t trying to impress the viewer with his labor, which, like watching a weightlifter having to prove how much he can hoist in the air, quickly proves tiresome."
Kenneth Baker reviews John Meyer: Diptychs at George Lawson Gallery, San Francisco, on view through June 13, 2015.
Baker writes: "The installation at Lawson permits visitors to see that the incidence of light on the paintings’ surfaces matters crucially to their definition, or self-definition. Yet even the surest perception of such aspects, under what seem close to ideal viewing conditions, feels tentative, subject to vagaries of changing daylight, viewing angle and our common incapacity finally to see as others see. Explicitness and elusiveness converge in Meyer’s work with an intensity we seldom see in contemporary art, irrespective of style. That flavor of experience can reach an exquisite, almost excruciating intensity in paintings where Meyer brought color into play, such as “Untitled Diptych #6 (Blue/White)” (1994)."
A. Bascove reviews Joan Snyder: Sub Rosa at Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York, on view through June 20, 2015.
Bascove writes: "Snyder is in full mastery here. Her use of multiple materials, lush color, and the tension of opposites; the thin washes under built up mounds of paint and paper mache, the stark contrast of pale clotted creams, whites and golds with intense deep rose, wine reds, and black purples. She continues her exploration of various textures of fabric and glitter with the integration of organic materials pulled from the earth. An embodiment of memory, hand written words and thoughts, are repeated and distorted to the point of illegibility. These are works of the primal emotions, of passion and loss."
Zachary Keeting and Christopher Joy visit the studio of painter Paul Pagk.
Pagk comments: "The experience I'm going for is different than what happens when I'm painting them... I'm trying to get to a place I don't know ... then it can capture my attention... I don't want paintings to arrive at final ideas too fast."
Brenda Goodman recalls the experience of making her 1985 painting Breakthrough.
Goodman writes: "The middle of the right hand side wasn’t working but it was so beautiful I didn’t want to give it up. I was standing on the edge of the abyss but willfully chose not to jump in. I did not want to 'wreck' this painting but was afraid there would be no light on the other end. I had never before or after felt this anxiety so intensely. The jump would mean letting go of that precious section and I would have to TRUST that something else would appear — and that something would resolve and complete the painting. After days of struggle I finally let go. I wiped out that area, and Presto…the painting was quickly finished. More than 30 years later, that abyss isn’t so scary anymore because I know if I let go of my will and ego and paint out the precious area the painting will finish itself in no time. If you do this over and over you acquire a level of trust that makes it easier. This process, I believe, is the most spiritual aspect of making a painting. Letting go, surrender and trust."
Charley Peters reviews works by Callum Innes recently on view at Frith Street Gallery, London.
Peters writes: "In these works geometry, and in some ways painting itself, is a performance; a systematic process of structurally marking out pictorial space in which to frame areas of chaotic chemical intervention; each stain of pigment recording decisive moments when the surface of the canvas starts to liquefy and move. Innes has related the temporal nature of his paintings as having an affinity with photography, saying, 'There is a moment in time and space when a painting stops in much the same way that a camera’s shutter closes on a moment in time, this is not a static thing.' The recent Exposed Paintings at Frith Street Gallery certainly do appear as freeze-frames of work in constant progress."
Hunter Braithwaite interviews painter Dale McNeil, whose show Material Will: Force In Form is on view at Tops Gallery, Memphis through May 31, 2015.
McNeil comments: "A part of my painting process involves placing a step—a phase or transitional level—between the traditional applications of paint to canvas. I take impressions from paintings in process, propagating the next work and allowing organic growth to a similar image. This method introduces the next version or variation. The process is rather clumsy and inaccurate but allows for aspects of randomness and chance, countering the restrictions I set for myself and allowing for a new unique composition."
William Tucker remembers painter James Adley (1931-2015).
Tucker recalls: "You could not get back far enough in his studio to get a picture without distortion, and even in a large public space the actual visual experience of a 50-foot canvas like Transition (1988-98) was impossible to capture in a slide. Size was a necessary component of his symphonic ambition for painting. He favored a horizontal format with an implied grid or web of vertical and horizontal bars, which could be more or less dominant or transparent, but never rigid or dogmatic and always carried out with delicacy and sensitivity. He worked thin acrylic paint with a variety of implements, including brooms, squeegees and sticks."
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.