Ronny H. Cohen

  • “Collages and Reliefs 1910–1945”

    “Collages and Reliefs 1910–1945” was a knockout of a museum-quality show jointly sponsored by this New York gallery and Annely Juda Fine Art in London. With works by such Dada and Constructivist artists as Jean Arp, Raoul Hausmann, Kurt Schwitters, László Moholy-Nagy, Alexandra Exter, and Liubov Popova, as well as Picasso, the exhibition captures the visionary conviction and intellectuality that drove the artist pioneers of early-20th-century Modernism to esthetic heights rarely matched today.

    Picasso’s and Braque’s injection of collage into their Cubist paintings of 1912 opened the eyes of many

  • Jonathan Santlofer

    Jonathan Santlofer produces some of the most aggressive paintings around. At the source of the strong impact made by each of the single panels and diptychs here is the supercharged relationship between the shaped edges and the illusionistic planar images. Surging sensations of colored space in movement and depth characterize these curvy, lushly painted pictorial forms.

    The paintings range in size from Breaking, 1982, which measures 21 1/4 by 20 inches, to the large diptychs like Duet II, 1982, which measures 82 by 79 inches. In the larger works the expansive qualities inherent in Santlofer’s

  • Helen Oji

    Helen Oji is fully involved in the current trend toward personalized visualizations, whether of formal issues like colored space or representational issues like the human figure. She first came to the general attention of the New York art world in 1980; the recent works develop the structural and thematic potential inherent in the examples from that period in intriguing ways.

    Space Shuttle, 1982, strongly recalls work such as Flight, 1980, but the newer piece is the bolder creation. Oji continues to use her mixed-media combination of acrylic: rhoplex, and glitter, and the unique shape—the

  • “Citysite Sculpture”

    Tne Citysite Sculpture project in the center of Toronto’s St. Lawrence Market area consists of one large-scale work each by the Canadian artist Melvin Charney and the American sculptors Robert Stackhouse and Nancy Holt. Funded by the Canadian federal, provincial, and municipal governments and aided by corporate donations of materials and manpower, the project was coordinated by Visual Arts Ontario, the largest artists’ association in Canada, which not only serves as a resource center for members but during its eight-year existence has become a progressive force for public-art education through


    ELIZABETH MURRAY IS ONE OF the few authentic pictorial pathfinders working today. Since the mid ’70s she has charted a strikingly personal and influential course through the Modernist-sanctioned yet supercharged concept of painting as colored space. Stressing eccentric geometries, deeply saturated hues, and constructively dynamic compositions, her vision has illuminated for many other artists, particularly those of the emerging generation, a way of making abstract paintings that simultaneously probe and reveal the physical and psychical dimensions of “colored space,” in a sharply individuated

  • Louisa Chase

    Louisa Chase’s recent paintings and drawings deal in the visual politics of seeing and feeling. In romantic picture-making of Chase’s type success is clearly a matter of image—what is important is the power of the image to persuade as sentiment and provoke as emotion, rather than any question of technique or color. At issue here, then, are not only the contents but the compositions.

    Landscape is the major theme in this group of works, although in canvases such as Storm, 1981, certain motifs (a floating hand, for example) recall the artist’s involvement with figurative subjects in the “Lives of

  • D. Jack Solomon

    D. Jack Solomon continues to center his droll pictorial fantasies around animals. Where the jungle and the zoo were the major themes in his last show, in 1980, cats now provide the main motif. In fact, the artist says the starting point for these pieces was the idea of a “cat coming in from the side.” This idea is rendered with inventive formal variations in these ambiguous narrative drawings and constructions.

    Certain devices in the drawings, with their frames within the frame, decorated margins, and plays on spatial and volumetric illusionism, display an interest in traditional Persian miniatures,

  • Joe Zucker

    Since 1969 Joe Zucker has made pictures on an eclectic array of subjects drawn from art, nature, history, literature, life, and, of course, the imagination. His sources have ranged from Byzantine mosaics through boxing to life on the Bowery. What is more notable about the pictures, however, is the medium: layered arrangements of different-sized, -shaped, and -colored acrylic-soaked and rhoplex-stained cotton balls. The development of Zucker’s cotton-ball technique into a manipulatable tool of pictorial expression was evident in this one-person retrospective, which surveyed his career from 1969

  • Artpark

    Artpark is probably the most innovative, successful, and likable public-art project to have come out of the economically and culturally expansive late ’60s and early ’70s in America. Dedicated to the noble notion of bringing the arts to the people and located on two hundred landscaped acres in upper New York State along the Niagara River, Artpark is both a physically picturesque and historically significant site; but the arts are the principal attraction, and they here encompass theater, music, dance, performance, storytelling, crafts, and, most strikingly, the visual arts.

    Every season the latter

  • Joan Snyder

    Joan Snyder has produced some of the most “loaded” paintings in contemporary American art. The 1981 and 1982 works here are enticingly “loaded,” from the tops of their densely rich, boldly built-up, mixed media surfaces to the deep-down emotive implications of their primary, signlike imagery.

    Throughout the ’70s Snyder subverted the color-field style that then dominated abstract painting. She developed a method for turning the grid, the favorite geometric form of the ’70s, as well as the zigzag into expressionist shapes. Brush strokes and drips were isolated in her compositions not so much to

  • Gwenn Thomas

    Gwenn Thomas is one of the most exciting younger artists working with photography and painting today. Her methods for transforming photographic images into a new, distinctive line of pictorial objects were tellingly revealed here.

    What Thomas does not do is paint over the photograph’s surface, although this is a favorite device among many artists in this arena. What she does do is create an intriguingly specific space around her photographs, a frame that permits her to keep her color Type C or Cibachrome prints intact but profoundly altered, nevertheless, by the means of presentation.


  • “Russian Samizdat Art 1960–1982”

    Samizdat means “self-published” in the Soviet Union, and Samizdat art consists mainly of books and magazines published and distributed by the same artists and/or poets who made them. This exhibition, showing over a hundred works by about thirty artists, was curated and designed by artists Rimma and Valery Gerlovin; it successfully revealed the strikingly intellectual, imaginative, and serious, but simultaneously playful, character of this important and vital expression of contemporary Russian art.

    It is helpful to consider this material in the peculiar publishing context of the Soviet Union. The