Critics’ Picks

Skywater, 2006.


Kika Karadi

Via del Parco Margherita 43
May 31–July 30

This exhibition of seven large paintings and three small works on glass is Hungarian-born, New York–based artist Kika Karadi’s first European solo show. Through an uncompromising abstract style, in which firm, sharp, multidirectional brushstrokes generate a pictorial density that can be hard to penetrate, Karadi creates a rich fantasy world, a painterly Wonderland well worth slipping into. These paintings have a refreshing sense of focus and present a visual tension that generates seemingly organic compositions, as if each work, with its ability to arouse emotions, is a living presence. Each look at the canvases reveals new details. Although dark tones seem dominant at first, layers and layers of color create a vibrant composition whose seemingly uncontrolled abandon echoes our chaotic yet ultimately ordered moment. By covering over her previous marks, Karadi doesn’t simply cancel past moves but rather creates something new—affirmation from negation, creation from destruction. Without appealing to known, easy structures, Karadi creates compellingly complex paintings that dovetail smoothly with our time.