New York

Jan Dibbets

Leo Castelli Gallery downtown

In his recent show of photographic grids of sections of forest and field, Jan Dibbets is working within a more painterly tradition than is generally evidenced in his work. Although they are not the only possible antecedents, a comparison with two earlier field painters, Monet and Pollock, is germane to discussion of Dibbets’ current work.

There are many one-to-one parallels between Dibbets’ photographs and Monet’s late water-lily paintings. In each, the artist begins with a fixed view of a horizontal surface seen from the roughly 45° angle of vision of a standing person. The horizontal plane is then suspended vertically on a wall, causing the original surface to lose its depth and become essentially two-dimensional. Both Monet and Dibbets are producing decorative works in which the emotional and visual content is lessened by the suppression of visual incident into a continuous frieze or

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