Los Angeles

Group Show

Frank Perls Gallery

Local artists are joined by three Europeans in a group show at the Frank Perls Gallery. Interest centers on two recent paintings by Sam Amato whose work has been undergoing considerable change of late. Still transitional, Interior With Standing Figure is the more fully realized of the two. Its Fauve pattern has real vitality. William Brice continues his concentration on the figure. Although an excellent draughtsman, there are some painterly passages in his Figures and Sea No. 2 that do not articulate form as consistently as might be desired. There is greater coherence in the frankly romantic Reclining Figure No. 1, an oil sketch on paper mounted on canvas. Robert Chuey has been called an Abstract Expressionist but his canvases, non-objective as they may appear, are slowly evolved from direct and personal experiences with the landscape that surrounds his studio. Adding variety to the group show are the technically clean and dexterous impressions of the young printmaker, Wesley Chamberlin. The two very small but very handsome groups of bathers by James McGarrell indicate that this artist is moving away from literary involvement and toward a Cézanne aesthetic that has great potential. On the other hand, the struggle between content and aesthetic device continues to make the work of James Strombotne uneven. Saga of the Fat Idiot is effective but too obvious; Light Source attempts more than it achieves; Groping Man attains a far more efficacious balance. Ruth Saturensky’s Triptych is interesting and probably adds more to the exhibition than do the gouaches by the French Gerard Eppele. In sculpture, Oliver Andrews’ stoneware piece, although interesting in surface, is overshadowed by the starkness of Austrian Rudolf Hoflehner’s Walking Man and by the works of Philippe Hiquily. This French artist offers us two pieces: the heroic Man in welded sheet metal and a mobile, Balancing Man. Both make lasting impressions.

––Constance Perkins