Los Angeles

John O’Connor

Santa Barbara Museum, Santa Barbara

This is a one man show of John O’Connor who is presently acting Instructor in Art at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and was formerly Director of the Art Gallery at the University of California at Davis. O’Connor shows 24 paintings, 2 large canvases, the rest small and charming. At present he is particularly interested in psychological symbolism, in addition to presenting a well organized statement. He has made a study of Christian and Pagan paintings as to their symbolic intent and in searching for the source of their meaning believes to have found it to have meaning for himself. Portrait of M, 1962, is one of these of psychological interest. He uses a luminous pale purple-pink paint over the face of the girl, giving her a bewitched, mystical quality. Landscape #2, 1963, is a colorful, satisfying, strong, free painting with vibrant juxtapositions of color. Sink, 1963, is a carefully modulated painting with a horizontal space division, fractured and then re-woven into a unified whole. O’Connor’s larger paintings are not as convincing as his smaller ones. They lack unity and are uneven in the development of both color and composition.

Harriette Von Breton