New York

Robert Wade

Kornblee Gallery

Working with thematic material related to an oblique yet connected view of Texan culture and a sentimental attitude toward the freakish, Robert Wade takes his family picture of Roy Rogers and Trigger, or shots of cattle mating, or dead coyotes—not to mention the tattooed lady, or the lady with stretchable skin—and blows them up large, printing them up on canvas prepared with photographic emulsion. The job is done in a cursory manner, with brown stains and unsteady values. These in turn are pinned directly to the wall. The pictures are about adolescent sentiment, about the tyranny of photography in contemporary art, and the conventionalization of post-Minimal clichés (no stretchers, directly appended), and, above all else, the continued throttlehold of Warhol on a large segment of beginning artists. Dragging all this hackneyed material, it is surprising that Wade’s show gains as much purchase as it does.

Robert Pincus-Witten