Erica Rawles

  • Torkwase Dyson, Way Over There Inside Me (Ocean as a Super Throughway #1–4), 2020, four panels, graphite, acrylic, charcoal, and ink on canvas, each 40 × 30". From the series “Black Compositional Thought: 15 Paintings for the Plantationocene,” 2020.

    Torkwase Dyson

    Torkwase Dyson’s new series “Black Compositional Thought: 15 Paintings for the Plantationocene,” 2020, was organized into small groupings, with one standalone work, in her recent show of the same name. Within each piece, Dyson layered constellation-like white lines and minimalist black shapes over deep-black and blue washes. An abstract galaxy emerged from acrylic, charcoal, graphite, and ink.

    In a particularly distinctive pair of works jointly titled Interstitial Being (Architecture and Flesh #13, 14) (all works 2020), deep-charcoal-colored washes with subtle blue undertones made up the backgrounds,

  • Hanna Hur, The Wheel, 2019, colored pencil on silk, 48 × 36".

    Hanna Hur

    Hanna Hur’s meticulously crafted geometric paintings and handwoven chain mail are generated through repetitive, often laborious processes essential to her spiritual practice. Making a work can become a ritual in itself, as with her recently completed chain-mail sculpture The Gate iii, to which she had been adding since 2014. The piece reveals its age through the contrast between dull and shiny clusters of metal links. Hur’s two-dimensional works are elaborate as well—often so detailed that, when looking at them from afar, the eye glazes over subtle shifts in tone and mark-making, simplifying

  • Li Shun, Sketch - Ocean 2 (detail), 2018, charcoal on book pages of The Leaves of Grass, ink-jet print, this component 65 x 37".
    picks February 05, 2019

    Li Shun

    Before ever setting foot in the US, Li Shun had traveled the country extensively through a virtual private network that allowed him to access Google Maps in China. On his “imaginary tours” (a term borrowed from the Chinese practice of woyou, or traveling via landscape paintings), he became acquainted with the land and its culture and began making intimate, atmospheric drawings of sites he had explored. In a fascinating show that marks the artist’s first physical trip to the US, Li chronicles the process of his authentic study of place.

    The artist’s series “Internet Sketch,” 2018–19, features

  • Helen Rae, Untitled (June 12, 2018), colored pencil and graphite on paper, 24 x 18".
    picks February 01, 2019

    Helen Rae

    Helen Rae creates bold, textured drawings with colored pencil on paper, taking the spreads in fashion magazines as inspiration. Folds and changes in tone are conveyed with solid lines rather than gradual shading, making her works feel just as abstract and dynamic as the patterns and lighting of the clothes being modeled.

    Rae's underwater series is especially majestic in its mosaic-like detail and illusion of suspended movement. In Untitled (June 12 2018), a woman wearing what appears to be a red dress bends backward in a dramatic arch, but her head and face never materialize clearly. Instead,

  • Kwame Brathwaite, Untitled (Ethel Parks at AJASS Studios photoshoot), 1969/2018, ink-jet print, 60 x 60".
    picks December 30, 2018

    Kwame Brathwaite

    The absorbing gaze of a woman’s dark eyes draws the viewer in at photographer Kwame Brathwaite’s exhibition at Philip Martin Gallery. Untitled (Ethel Parks at AJASS Studios photoshoot), 1969, is the largest print in the room. The model’s simple headscarf and plain sweater clarify her face as the focal point of the image. The warmth of the crimson background is echoed in the rich tones of her brown skin and the glowing highlights that mark her high cheekbones, which are accentuated by a soft smile.

    Deep red hues recur across many of Brathwaite’s pictures, guiding the viewer’s eye from the cherry

  • Han Youngsoo, Hangang River, Seoul, Korea 1958, 2018, toned gelatin silver print, 16 x 20".
    picks October 31, 2018

    Han Youngsoo

    Han Youngsoo began his career as a photographer after serving for three years at the front lines of the Korean War. “I left the army with these horrific memories intact and found myself in the middle of a life which still bore traces of soot from the war,” he remarked. Even more surprising, he found, was that “people lived on.” Han captured the humanity, delicacy, and humor of the perplexingly everyday moments that persisted despite the country’s devastation.

    In one of the many photos that he took at the Han River, a young girl bends over dramatically, her torso forming a line parallel to the

  • Paul Anthony Smith, Kings, 2018, unique picotage on  inkjet print with spray paint mounted on museum board, 50 x 39 4/5".
    picks September 20, 2018

    Paul Anthony Smith

    From a distance, Paul Anthony Smith’s “picotage” pieces, 2012–, resemble movie stills interrupted by television static. Up close, they look like pictures dotted with tiny dabs of white paint. Smith creates these small, textured imperfections by carefully picking apart his mounted photographs with a ceramic needle, exposing their white undersides. These sculptural marks form layers of neatly patterned geometric shapes that mask some parts of his photographs, manipulating the pictures’ depths and conveying a sense of movement. Like old-fashioned lenticular billboards that display a different image

  • Sheree Hovsepian, Under Influence, 2018, Silver gelatin photographs, silver gelatin photogram, nylon, artist’s frame, 34 1/4 x 28 1/2 x 6 1/2”.
    picks March 30, 2018

    Sheree Hovsepian

    Sheree Hovsepian’s works express movement and form in a way that prompts a heightened awareness of the body’s weight and gestures. Through intimate photographs of figures cropped and covered within assemblages, the artist has consistently created a presence that expands beyond the pieces themselves to tap into the viewer’s own physical consciousness. In this exhibition, she continues to merge photography, sculpture, and performance by interweaving these images with nylon fabric and silver-gelatin photograms. Hovsepian lets the human figure take its form from the negative spaces created by the