Paulina Perlwitz reviews the exhibition Smart Painting at Artspace, New Haven, curated by John O'Donell, on view through March 22, 2014. The show features works by Blake Shirley, Sharon Butler, Deborah Dancy, Zachary Keeting, Ben Piwowar, Jenn Dierdorf, Rob D. Campbell, Derek Leka, Clare Grill, and Tatiana Berg.
Perlwitz writes: "The way Smart Paintings is organized might not be in line with the principles of 'casualist painting,' (an underlying theme of the show), but the friction between the stylized niche these works are said to be fitting into and the almost heavy handed organizational structure utilized by the curator is provocative and unnerving. O'Donnell uses the works of several different artists and opens up a dialogue between the paintings. The show professes to gather together the work of several painters who are asking similar questions about the definitions and properties of painting. However, it seems that O'Donnell's concerns may lie more in using the works of other artists to create one larger piece of art unto itself More than a show about paintings, this is a show that utilizes space to let paintings talk to each other."
Micchelli writes that the show, which features works by Ariel Dill, Clare Grill, Kristina Lee, Sarah Faux, and Tatiana Berg, "is predicated on the belief that 'mundanely subjective perceptions can yield extraordinary insights,' and it succeeds within its own boundaries. While those boundaries are rather narrow, in a broader context Casualism, with its humble anti-heroics, acts as a necessary corrective to the overblown production values that have carried away most of the market’s high end as well as the lion’s share of media attention. Casualism’s importance lies as much in the immediate, restorative transaction between artist and artwork as it does in its philosophical open-endedness."
Zachary Keeting and Christopher Joy interview painter Clare Grill.
Grill discusses the source materials for her abstract paintings but she comments: "Often I'll start a painting with some kind of.. image or thing, then once the painting starts, the painting starts to have it's own set of rules at play, and then that's where the concern is... It's moved on from what it's source was." She continues noting that her sources are "inspiring but they're a jumping off point... I'm moved to make paintings and those are the things that I'm caring deeply about and trying to follow."
Joshua Abelow blogs images of the exhibition Primary at Nudashank, Baltimore, MD, on view through September 14, 2012.
The gallery materials state that "Working against convention, these artists are putting into practice an 'abject expressionism' in respect to materials, composition, color and form, sharing a rogue sense of what constitutes beauty. Among other things, the works in this exhibition reflect an instinctual acting upon surfaces or materials. The artists’ touches are visible, active, and at times assertive--each tear, scrape, twist and drip intentional and impactful."
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.