Hurst writes that "the idea of reasserting the value of painting, the value of 'inner content' within an artwork, or of transience, is hardly novel. Nonetheless, the paintings on view at A Pinch of Saffron, Dash of Vermouth seem to walk the walk... It is a combined yearning to transcend the everyday and banal that unites these artists. While other generations have done this with fetid brows and heroic gesture the artists in this exhibition seem to temper their efforts with humility and humor. The result is a sum greater than its parts."
Jonathan Stevenson highlights two shows featuring "casualist" painting at DODGE Gallery, New York: Corresponding Selves: Jane Fox Hipple (through October 27) and A Pinch of Saffron, Dash of Vermouth, curated by Ted Gahl, featuring work by Jonathan Allmaier, Ned Colclough, Robert Davis, Joanne Greenbaum, Angel Otero, Meghan Petras, Josh Smith, and Johannes VanDerBeek (through October 27).
Stevenson writes that Hipple "tugs the strand of Casualism keyed to the shambolic nature of everyday life into the household. Contrasting conventional rectangular space with foreign objects like sheets and screws self-consciously affixed to sloppily stretched – even ripped – canvases, she invests her pieces with the shifting emotions that might arise as one tours a house and pauses to reflect on each of its rooms." Curator Gahl "focuses on the limits that artists impose on process and materials – and how artists exploit skill and technique to transcend those limits – another Casualist theme."
Oz writes: "Petras’ paintings are painted mostly with fabric paint, which she then cuts up and reassembles together making a both a fractured painted surface and a painting that is assembled as a unified object." Asked about this process Petras comments: "Making the seams is a way for me to add a tension and create a physical break in the painting that disrupts or interrupts the emerging patterns that may form in the painting. It also brings a bit of geometry to a very an otherwise organic painting. When it works it is very re-engaging for me."
An essay that proposes links between pop culture attitudes (music and dance in particular) and the "provisional" trend in contemporary painting.
"Dancing, at least as it might happen in a club to the tune of Kesha’s songs, is a kind of ecstatic yet responsive expression, the physical enactment of an internal reaction to an external stimulus. Something similar might be said of abstract painting, both in regard to the process of making it and to the process of viewing it, both of which can be emotional and even rapturous. In thinking about the relationship between pop music’s fascination with end times and life in post-crash America, I couldn’t help thinking about the a similar rise in visibility of abstract work concurrent with pop music’s 'apocalyptic abandon.' In the past two years, several critics attempted to theorize practices in this very broad vein, most prominently Raphael Rubinstein and Sharon Butler, whose respective terms of 'Provisional Painting' and 'The New Casualists' focus on the unfinished appearance of such work. Butler describes this tendency as 'calculated tentativeness,' but I would like to propose the opposite: what if we think of such work not as trying to look incomplete, but as rejecting completion as a contemporarily relevant state in a late capitalist society where instability and precariousness reign? Here, even perfection won’t help you get a job, and it certainly won’t save you from getting laid off. In this view, we might think of contemporary abstract painting more like music, and particularly dance music: remixed and faded into the tracks before and after it such that it never ends and becomes instead a perpetual experience of the present."
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.