Dennis Adrian

  • Philip Pavia

    Philip Pavia’s group of eleven sculptures at the Martha Jackson Gallery allow one at last to see what all the fuss has been about. As is hardly any secret, Pavia’s recent works involve the articulation of rectangular cubic pieces of marble, which, having been squarely cut, have then been mauled and fragmented by the artist before their integration into his compositions.

    The stones all are, or were, extremely handsome. The ones that still are handsome may be enjoyed as such, and the ones that were give rise to a mild but agreeable nostalgic regret about their present damaged condition. The psychic

  • Dick Smith

    Dick Smith’s recent show at the Richard Feigen Gallery extends the range of his involvement with serial compositions within the context of geometrically shaped canvases. Smith’s shaping does not leave off at making his works complex conceptual forms to be seen only parallel to the wall, but rather they invariably have projections into space which emphasize all the specifics of their character qua objects. By this means Smith forcibly brings the viewer into a territory unmistakably the artist’s own: the pieces do not, as does so much kindred work, appear to be geometric abstract painting updated

  • John Opper

    At the Grace Borgenicht Gallery the long-established abstract painter John Opper is showing nine sizeable paintings and a group of twelve tiny collages. To take the paintings first, all the compositions are similar, consisting of vertical wedgy rectangles, set shoulder to shoulder, which lurch and grind against one another. The few horizontal forms in each work appear, in this context, to be the narrow ends of yet other such forms pushing into the crowd from above or below. All of the forms display a variety of feathered and tighter edges that establish the possibility of an extremely restricted

  • Constantino Nivola

    Constantino Nivola’s current exhibition at the Byron Gallery is dominated by the more than a dozen reliefs though there are a fair number of free standing pieces to be seen as well. The reliefs are the more successful pieces, because of their convincing nature imagery and delectable technique. What is sumptuous in the reliefs becomes fussy in the small free pieces, and the inventions in the latter are on the whole comparatively enervated.

    Most of the reliefs are concerned with Nivola’s personal cosmographic, or at least meteorological, allegories. The artist’s experience of nature, or his reflection

  • James McGarrell

    James McGarrell’s current show at the Allan Frumkin Gallery leads one again into the phantasmagoria of form and idea paradoxes that this artist has been revealing with increasingly greater painterly finesse for a number of years now. The five or six big paintings in the show deal with, imagistically, the variant meanings or interpretations of a given concept, and which, presented together in a single pictorial context, set off in the consciousness yet other formally related images. Some of these latter are then included in a given work as well. The large Currents, for example, shows a nude female

  • Lowell Nesbitt

    At the Howard Wise Gallery, Lowell Nesbitt shows tinted grey paintings of real and imaginary interiors, uninhabited except for objects of indeterminate or unrelated scale.

    The point of the pictures, which are painted with a deadpan attention to form that obliterates most textural variety, is that interior spaces, when they are unexpectedly empty or occupied by an unlikely item, have the power to act as stage settings for bizarre activities conjured up by the fantasy of the viewer. It is “But I’m sure I heard a seal bark!” all over again. In Mr. Nesbitt’s works, an object or two in his settings,

  • Richard Tum Suden

    Richard Tum Suden’s work at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery is a sprightly multitude of small panels of identical size, set together in six or eight large rectangular units. Each square panel (about 11'' x 11'') has a bright, wiggly biomorphic abstraction on a white ground; set in rows in the larger units, they are too numerous to be read as separate pictorial entities, and too active formally for the larger overall articulation to be seen as of a piece. In this way, they make up a truly novel format, perhaps closer to an enlarged section of a tidily set mosaic than anything else. Coloristically, the

  • Varusan Boghosian

    At the Stable Gallery, Varusan Boghosian shows eighteen constructions belonging to the decorative-portentous school. Each piece contains a doll or doll like head of cast metal in association with a number of found objects which are, in most cases, symmetrically disposed around it. Some of the pieces are wall-mounted boxes with glass fronts. The titles are operatically metaphysical—The Key to the Kingdom, Eurydice, The Measure of Man, The Grand Design, Shadow and Substance, Night Game, Reign of Death, and so on.

    The artist’s obvious intention is that having seen the objects and read the titles,

  • Winslow Homer

    The Ira Spanierman Gallery on East 78th Street presents a benefit exhibition of Winslow Home paintings from the collection of Cooper Union. This institution (whose Museum Fund is the show’s beneficiary) acquired the twenty-two paintings on view in successive gifts in 1916 and 1918 by Mr. and Mrs. Charles Savage Homer. The works are all brilliant and fresh, having been the happy recipients of T.L.C. from present-day donors in the form of careful cleaning and other conservation techniques, and handsome reframing. It seems the paintings had, as a friend once observed of a famous Baltimore hostess,

  • Howard Kanovitz

    Howard Kanovitz’s current exhibition of paintings and drawings at the Jewish Museum shows how, among contemporary artists, an authentic engagement with the problems of figure painting is truly rare. Instead of confronting the psychological and pictorial complexities inherent in any artistic undertaking where the human figure is the focus of interest and effort, Kanovitz’s works are illustrational in both style and concept. The pictures are less figure paintings than group or single likenesses. The general arrangement has been determined by a photograph of the variety taken for a fee by “a

  • Darby Bannard

    Darby Bannard’s exhibition at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery consists of six large horizontal canvases of identical size. Immaculate and precise, the compositions are similar aggregations of irregular polygons whose sides are arcs of immense circles, circles much larger than any single canvas. Some looking at the pictures makes it clear that each composition is in fact geometrically so determined. On this conceptual basis rests the surface design of anonymous smooth color areas whose tonal harmony sets the mood of each painting.

    Four of the pictures are members of a series titled Blue Florida. Hung

  • Maryan

    Maryan’s recent exhibition of paintings and lithographs at the Allan Frumkin Gallery is perhaps the most dazzling of his hallucinatory groups of personages seen here in several years. While Maryan’s work has always been notable for its level of sustained inventiveness and power to command acceptance as a penetrating look into modes of being central to human experience, in the past he has brought this about alternatively by a super-clear visionary exposition of his fantasy or, as in his last show, with such violence and ferocity that the paintings seemed to preserve the imprint of a collision