Matthew Cheale

  • View of “Louise Giovanelli,” 2023. Photo: Michael Pollard.
    picks March 27, 2023

    Louise Giovanelli

    “Ambiguities arise when a detail is effective in several ways at once,” William Empson wrote in his foundational work of literary criticism Seven Types of Ambiguity (1930). The narratively cryptic details of Louise Giovanelli’s work are rife with loose, lax meaning. In each of her five cinematic canvases hung throughout Moon Grove’s Georgian-style rooms, we see the same anonymous young woman’s face in seductive, religious, or hallucinatory throes: Is she acting out a holy ritual, or ingesting psychoactive pills?

    Giovanelli’s source material is the bizarro world of film and media that surrounds

  • Ilana Savdie, The Mouth briefly shut itself, 2022, Oil, acrylic and beeswax on canvas stretched on panel, 72 x 67"
    picks August 11, 2022

    Ilana Savdie

    “In Jest,” Ilana Savdie’s first solo show in Britain, offers a marshaled profusion of monstrous forms, glossy surfaces, cellular patterns, animal parts, gobbets of decaying human flesh, and huge expanses of unevenly saturated color. At first glance, the licks and curls of paint suggest Helen Frankenthaler or Lee Krasner gone fluorescent, but Savdie interrupts the surface of her abstractions with figurative elements sourced from her drawings and manipulations of images found in the digital realm (for instance, microscopic views of viruses or a clown’s performance ritual posted on social media).