Los Angeles

Leonard Creo

Carter-Jamon Gallery

For an artist to be able to sequester himself artistically, if not physically, from the brutalities of our contemporary world is a sometimes enviable accomplishment. Painter Leonard Creo, American-born but currently working in Italy, has managed this neatest of tricks by isolating his gentle but impersonal vision on only the most ingenuous of subjects, children at play in the streets, in the marketplace, in school yards, and in just plain space. The obviously organized groupings are seemingly observed from on high by Creo acting as some sort of a hovering guardian angel recording in oil the swift activities of his charges with some objective tenderness and wit but with none of the charm or entertainment of, for example, Bemelmans. Fortunately the artist spares us the childish soap-opera melodramatics of the Keanes but has not left his observations untempered with compassion. On the rare occasions when he allows us to move in for a close-up we find his orphans are not all sugar and spice but rather amusingly grotesque and just possibly “awol” from Searle’s St. Trinians.

Curt Opliger