Los Angeles

The Search

Lytton Center for Visual Arts

In its current exhibition entitled The Search, Lytton Center for Visual Arts presents a group of ten leading California artists. The selection of work is such that each artist is shown retrospectively, enabling the viewer to follow his individual growth and development.

Helen Lundeberg’s style, which has grown more lyrical and free as she has become less literal, still retains the purity which gave her early work its compelling power and substance. John McLaughlin, in search of the “miraculous void” of Zen, exhibits a series of bare rectangular paintings derived from Mondrian and the Suprematists. Reginald Pollack’s style has remained consistently and exuberantly romantic and colorful. His versatility is displayed in his sculpture. George Baker’s recent sculpture shows the influence of Brancusi and is more sensuous in character. Naos and The Watcher represent a marked departure from his earlier more structurally mechanistic pieces. Robert Cremean’s sculptural variations on the human form have led him to experiment with many methods and materials. Laminated wood is the medium for his latest Surrealistic imagery, of which Anatomy Lesson No. 4 is an arresting example. These later more massive sculptures hark back to de Chirico, but Cremean has integrated the influence into his own personal style. Lorser Feitelson has greatly simplified his work over the years. The earlier pictures show a greater emotional strength though the later ones are more intellectually sophisticated. Vic Smith’s early Abstract Expressionist work appears without conviction and the same can be said for his latest paintings which have calmed down considerably but which do not have a content commensurate with their size. Shiro Ikegawa’s abstract prints are textural and cloth-like, and he appears to have evolved a special technique for achieving textile effects. His painting, however, is undeveloped and his sculpture is just for fun. John Paul Jones’s pictures have become increasingly more individual and stylized and his pictorially dramatic figurations achieve a mystical other-worldly effect. Hassle Smith’s Little Big Horn, a huge extravaganza in shades of red, is a representative painting from his earlier period while Cupid and Venus of 1965 is more literal in imagery but retains the same extravagance of paint and paintbrush.

Estelle Kurzen