Alexxa Gotthardt traces the history of influences on Louise Fishman's paintings and considers Fishman's current show at Cheim & Read, New York, on view through November 21, 2015.
Gotthardt writes: "In All Her Colors, Fishman drew from the colors her mother used, 'often influenced by Matisse and Renoir,' she explains. The painting, however, layered with active strokes of yellow, mauve, green, blue, black, and large, uplifting areas of white, applied with palette knives and the occasional finger, is distinctly Fishman’s. It contains the thread that courses through her expansive body of work—an inherent dynamism siphoned from the energy of her surroundings, whether they be a room of Titian masterworks, the streets of New York or Venice, the resonance of a Schumann composition, or the many unsung female artists of her past."
Mugar writes: "There is an analogy here to Stella and his relationship to the long optical tradition of western painting. The crew of the Pequod which experiences a hands on feel for the world around them is not experienced by Ahab in its essence but is manipulated and ignored in the way Stella’s colors are abstract in the worst sense, derived from color-aid packs, not the way color is experienced in the eye as you see in Bonnard, Matisse or Cezanne. He has left artistically the sensuality of being in the world behind in order to fulfill what he sees as his manifest destiny to occupy more and more space. His formal elements are not achieved but imposed as he piles patterns on top of patterns. If there is an analogy in Stella’s lack of grounding in the sensual it fails in comparison to Ahab himself. Stella does not live up to the ascetic delirium of Ahab. The journey he takes us on is neither majestic nor exhilarating. There is no hint at the void that lies under all of his exploits."
Cooke writes: "It is not only that [Kelly's] paintings are abstract; they are not personal, either. 'I felt very much that painting [in the 50s] was too personal. I wanted to do anonymous work, like the old masters.' He thinks for a moment. 'You know, I met Giacometti. He was fun to be with – though when I went to his studio, it was obvious he wanted to be alone when he was working, so I was only there for a few minutes. But what he and I did was exactly the same: I mean the spirit of it. His figures were surrounded by emptiness; I lost the figure altogether. When he saw my work, he was so excited: he got it immediately.'"
Mink comments: "Anything that I paint, I think, 'What can I hide?' and 'What can I say, without having to really come out and say it?' People don’t always want to talk about the real things. There are so many conversations that cannot happen. Every now and then I get to have intimate conversations. In between, I enjoy painting. Painting offers me everything. I take full advantage of it now. I spent so many years painting in private: paintings I would not show, but which I learned from... I think my obsession with hiding thoughts in paintings will continue to grow. With social media, and media in general, there are a vast amount of stories out in the world. But painting always holds mystery, and you can keep coming back to it. Like the poetry and lyrics I am drawn to, I don’t need answers for them, or plots, or outcomes. I like vague."
Cornish writes: "In general, Lanyon’s realism is seen as an embodied one, concerned with the experience of a particular place at a particular time, in which artist and landscape are figured as completely bound up with each other – land, sky and weather thrown into the melee of an individual consciousness, this consciousness simultaneously the arena that binds the environment together... In line with an understanding of Lanyon as a realist painter is an understanding of changing subject matter as the chief cause of the changing look – for want of a better word – of Lanyon’s painting. The 'place' pictures of the 50s (not included in the exhibition), with their jumbles of Cornish hills, mines and cliffs, precede the 'glider' paintings, with the gap between the two occupied by the 'weather' pictures: the shift correlates with a movement upwards, away from the ground. Instead of earth colours, the clear icy blue of the sky. Instead of hills, mines and cliffs, flurries of marks indicate the thermals gliders rely on to ascend, or lines trace their flight paths through the sky."
Schjeldahl writes that the show "will likely provoke varied opinions, on a scale from great to god-awful. The crowded installation of huge abstract paintings, reliefs, sculptures, and painting-sculpture hybrids, augmented by works on paper, tracks the New York artist’s fifty-seven-year career. At the start is the deathly glamour of Stella’s Black Paintings—bands in matte enamel, separated by fuzzy pinstripes of nearly bare canvas—which shocked everyone with their dour simplicity when they appeared in a show at the Museum of Modern Art, in 1959. Those works, which Stella began making when he was a senior at Princeton, amounted to tombstones for Abstract Expressionism and heralds of minimalism. The new show ends with one crazy-looking mode after another, mostly in the form of wall-hung constructions, created since the early nineteen-seventies. In between are too few of the swaggering compositions—of target-like concentric stripes, designs based on compasses and protractors, and shaped canvases that echo the shapes painted on them—that made Stella a god of the sixties art world, exalting tastes for reductive form, daunting scale, and florid artificial color."
Sultan writes that the show "is a deeply satisfying one: there is a sense of exploration, of expanding ideas; there is also a wonderful sensitivity to the weights of color and shape. Each of 12 paintings in this show, large or small, has beautifully realized surfaces: they are smooth and glassy, or revealing of the canvas beneath the color, or richly textured."
Andrea Zlotowitz reviews Surface Tension at Garis & Hahn, New York, on view through November 14, 2015. The show features works by Lala Abaddon, Jamie Powell, Sarah Sieradzki, and Rachael Wren.
Zlotowitz writes: "Through the subtle hues of their palettes and the artworks' illusory textures, a cohesive vision emerges, connecting the four distinct bodies of work in this show. Offering a counter-vision to a computer-generated dependence, Surface Tension partakes in a growing dialogue about digital aesthetics, reality versus illusion, and hands-on approaches to the paradigm of digital art as we currently understand it. The transformative works glowing in the gallery are beyond digital or analogue; they simply show the incredible things artists can do when they aren't limited by medium or movement."
Rob Colvin review the group show Paul Klee at Underdonk on view through November 1, 2015. The show features works by Peter Acheson, Britta Deardorff, Jared Deery, Lori Ellison, Amy Feldman, Glenn Goldberg, Brenda Goodman, J Grabowski, Loie Hollowell, Christopher Joy, Hein Koh, Jonathan Lasker, June Leaf, Dona Nelson, Carl Ostendarp, Kim Sloane, Joyce Robins, Jason Saager, Brian Wood, and Sanford Wurmfeld.
Colvin writes: "Artists, and here, curators Ashley Garrett and JJ Manford, are taking a second look at the work of the Swiss-born German artist (1879–1940). For Alfred Barr, Modernism’s biggest champion and director of the Museum of Modern Art, 'not even Picasso approaches [Klee] in sheer inventiveness.' So it may be the 20-artist exhibition Paul Klee is worth at least a first look, and perhaps a second too."
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.