new-york

Abstract Illusionism

Tibor De Nagy Gallery

In her essay, “Abstract Illusionism” (Artforum, October, 1967), Barbara Rose took note of a pictorialism which posited either 1) a geometrically based illusion which despite an ambiguous reading did no violence to two-dimensionality (itself accepted as the hard-prized spoil of the battle for modernist art) or 2) a coloration which would equally respect this two-dimensional screen. This latter intuition had earlier been given strong endorsement in Clement Greenberg’s essay “Byzantine Parallels,” in which he had described a new kind of luminousness which, like Byzantine gold and mosaic, could emerge “to fill the space between itself and the spectator with its radiance.”

The artists whom Miss Rose discussed in this connection were Ron Davis, Darby Bannard, Frank Stella and Jules Olitski. Without in any sense these artists having been supplanted in the interim, Miss Rose has nevertheless

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