New York

Antonio Tapies

Martha Jackson Gallery

Antonio Tapies’ show at Martha Jackson is peculiarly frustrating. This Spanish artist can create surfaces of incredible beauty out of plaster, cinders, etc.; mark them with his fingers or his feet or a stick in mysterious ways that effectively draw the eye right into them for a rich helping of texture—and then fuss them up with some small, precious details—just enough to kill their aggressive splendor and make them, in the end, self-consciously “works of Art” rather than the magic presences they started out to be.

Kasha Linville