Donald Butkovich

  • Group Show

    So many pieces of work by somany young artists are exhausting and confusing to the viewer and degrading to the artists. One is presented at Duane Street with a Sears Roebuck catalog of third generation rehash of second generation modern figuration. The incessant drawing and working through of modernist pictorial concepts, such as those of Giacometti, Rodin, Picasso, Modigliani, and recently, Balthus and Hans Hofmann, is a connecting thread in all the work. Another thread is the general post-Cezanne surface consciousness. Surface is the prime concern, after which comes subject matter, level of

  • Landscape Painting

    Again the desire to produce finished looking paintings seems to dominate the show “Landscape Painting” at the First Street Gallery. Everyone has taken some approach to nature and painted it. The paintings are for the most part strong and European influenced. Taken together they appear too finished to be developing. But that is inherent in a show of one piece per artist. While the roots are in the 19th and 20th-century masters, there is more physical directness in both seeing and painting here than in the works at Duane Street.

    There is a definite compositional sensibility to the American scene

  • Temma Bell

    Temma Bell paints a very strong modernist figuration within a decorative (in the French sense) picture. She sees everything in her world as possible for inclusion in her painting, indoors and out, objects and people. She has a strong sense of composition and her color is handled with bold intensity. She creates an exciting and believable real space in one roofscape and in a still life with pumpkin and dog. The use of animals in her pictures as both figuration and symbol is sensitive and just. There is a sense of love for daylight and life which floods her work to give something poetic to the

  • Laura Shechter

    Laura Shechter’s clearly painted still lifes, landscapes, and buildings are again an approach to the surface of the canvas which says these are pictures, self-consciously mapped out and filled in. Everything is drawn out as composition first and then colored in locally with clear chromatic hues. (Her pictures have the look of some Italian paintings of the ’40s.) When she deals with still life problems of object relationships in space and shadow as subject matter, she either ignores the complexity of actual light in shadow areas or denies the solidity or space of the objects from which the shadows