San Francisco

Edgar Dorsey Taylor and Gail Wong

Crocker Art Gallery, Sacramento

Woodblock prints of Mexican subjects and European cafe society, romantic abstraction by a young Boston artist now living in California, plus a group show of works from the Sacramento Artists League and some prize-winning photographs from the Sierra Camera Club.

Taylor has the outstanding show here, with a tremendous range of subject matter and extraordinary capability in woodcutting. At times frankly illustrative, he can also be as expressionistic as either Munch or Schmidt-Rottluff. Coastal Baja California, with its brilliant sunshine and spectral landscape, lends itself to black-and-white, and Taylor makes the most of it—exaggerating desiccated fishheads along the shore into near-monuments or dignifying baggy-beaked pelicans almost to anthropomorphization. His cityscapes and boulevardiers are surprisingly light and witty as compared to his soberly penetrating interpretation of Mexico.

Gail Wong uses two distinct palettes, the better one stemming from Braque’s Cubist ochre, umber, black and white. This limited color scale depends heavily upon value organization, and under its discipline Miss Wong keeps her sentimental subject matter less stubbornly apparent than in her glamorous blue paintings.

The Sacramento Art League hangs the usual run-of-the-mill hobby and semi-professional works, with David Dangelo’s “Surface Forms” being the most interesting of this latter classification.

Elizabeth M. Polley