New Painting In Los Angeles

Newport Harbor Art Museum

New Painting In Los Angeles is very little painting, but I’m sure the straining of mechanical definition is intended to bare a) how “far” painting has come in Los Angeles, and b) how insightful the Newport Harbor Art Museum is in recognizing it. Jim Ganzer, to seize an example of work which is at least on the periphery of painting, is responsible for a 40 by 10-foot white dry wall on which a hunk of charred lumber has been dragged, leaving a processy drawing (the wood lies at the end of its path, on the floor). There’s another one, shorter, in which the medium (cutely given as “charcoal”) leaves a 90-degree arc from the lower left-hand corner (right out of Jasper Johns and Richard Jackson). The press release describes the pieces as “almost primitive” (I would say faux naif), “directionally forceful” (well . . . hell), and “subtly topographical.” I think it’s a hedged bet: if the look

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