San Francisco

Robert Hartman and Richard Wagner

Berkeley Gallery

Mixed media paintings expounding the romance of the aviator, and constructed metal sculpture playing weight against measure.

Hartman scrubs his canvases with subtle variable grays and into this nebulous background he photo-screens sepia-toned pictures of early-day biplanes or monoplanes in pairs, multiples in tight formation, and occasionally a single plane in lone-eagle concept (although there is no special reference to Lindberg). By keeping them compartmented in white rectangles he isolates them from the elemental sky area and suggests the artificiality of the flying machine despite its marvelous engineering. Man and machine, alone or in teams, in space but not of it. Flying, but not by a long shot as free as a bird.

Wagner raids the tool box as well as the scrap pile for such items as wrenches, pitchforks, levers, petcocks, and stove burners from which he constructs basically linear sculptures of both serious and humorous content with a fine respect for materials.

Elizabeth M. Polley