reviews

  • Beryl Korot

    Castelli Gallery | Uptown

    There were four different components in Beryl Korot’s show—and a myriad of equivalences. Materially heterogeneous, the piece consisted df drawings, plans, wall hangings and videotapes. Yet together, they formed a seamless, interwoven whole.

    Five drawings charted the detailed underpinnings of five wall hangings. Five plans mapped out the patterned editing of a five-screen video piece. The videotapes revealed the processes involved in making the hangings: the strings being woven, the feet moving on pedals, the gathering of strings to be tied, the smack of wooden bars. And the tape also showed the

    Read more
  • Llyn Foulkes

    Gruenbaum Gallery

    In abstraction, the frame has been echoed incessantly as composition. It has caused the much discussed “edge” problem. The frame has presented itself as an ornate gold division and as Bruce Boice’s plain pine wrapping which signals “frame.” The frame demarcates the boundary between “art” and “life.” Inside it, in the safe convention of the painting space, the artist enjoys “freedom.” Outside that frame, the world impinges on that freedom, being preoccupied with finances.

    Llyn Foulkes makes his own frames. No baroque ornament which says “pricelessness,” and no silver section frame which automatically

    Read more
  • Darryl Hughto

    Tibor De Nagy Gallery

    There are, I think, two very different kinds of modernist painting. Critical exuberance (or blindness) has kept them together for years, so that we feel a kinship between them where none exists. One kind is rationally structured, with brilliant and arbitrary color—the taut, severe works of Newman, and early Stella and Noland. The second group is recognizably slick and ingratiating. Hilton Kramer has succinctly called it the marriage of anarchy and decoration (in the pejorative sense of the word) in the works of Pollock. And Pollock and Olitski are the celebrated masters here. Their work, giving

    Read more
  • Franco Ciarlo

    Iolas Gallery and Fordham University Library, Lincoln Center

    Riding New York’s elevated subway lines, one looks down at what Franco Ciarlo calls “contemporary antiquity”—sides of to-be-demolished buildings with peeling paint and dirt silhouetting the absence of radiators, armchairs and paintings. His work has been inspired by the imprints of objects, spaces and lives which remain on the flanks of those buildings that once adjoined structures now razed to rubble.

    Titled “Reflections of Demolition,” Ciarlo’s technique and product are reflections both of the site of demolition and the act of demolishing. The pigment of these “murals” or “frescoes” is carefully

    Read more
  • Mary Frank

    Zabriskie Gallery

    The most often reproduced of Mary Frank’s new works has been a standing skirted female that everyone takes for an angel. The piece is untitled, and while it might be said to resemble a winged form, Frank’s ceramic figures are anything but angelic. Skeletal, dismembered, at once harshly angular and sinuously flowing, they are more akin to wickedly sexual satyrs than innocents of any kind. In one small piece and one mask, human faces blend with mythic animal heads; in several of the large pieces, ends of arms and legs spread out into curly-maned hooves instead of hands or feet. And perhaps to

    Read more
  • Winifred Lutz

    Marilyn Pearl Gallery

    Papermaking is making something of an effort to become an art form in its own right these days. Michelle Stuart naturally comes to mind, with her large rubbed hangings; others, like Dorothea Rockburne, with paper edges curling and lifting, expanses of color making compositional references, are replacing the canvas with sheets of paper. Winifred Lutz has worked extensively in paper as an adjunct to her large sculptures. While her outdoor constructions and site-oriented pieces are large in scale, her handmade paper works are more intimate, though sometimes making larger sculptural references. The

    Read more
  • Marvin Torffield

    Paula Cooper Gallery | 529 West 21st Street

    At Marvin Torffield’s recent installation you enter immediately into a maze of fabric hanging floor to ceiling at the door. You can’t see where you’re going or what you are coming to, but somehow it doesn’t seem as if the fabric corridor is the sculpture, so you keep going, waiting for the maze to end. Strange music starts to come in along the way—at the end of the tunnel there are two loudspeakers on the floor in the cleared gallery space. The music is supposed to be here, it’s part of the piece. Nice music, sort of ’50s jazz. It changes suddenly to loud percussive sounds, bells, gongs, chanting

    Read more
  • Jim Dine

    The Pace Gallery | 508 W 25th Street

    Jim Dine’s recent paintings move away from the ironies of Pop art; he has enlarged his robes (a recurrent theme) to monumental size and disencumbered the canvases of the physical objects he once attached to them. In his current series detail is slightly blurred while color recedes by steps into pale, consolatory shades even when it is bright. At the same time, Dine describes his robes more explicitly than he has in the past, and presses them close up against his picture planes as if to heroicize them. These robes stand in their frames as the robed phantom body might if he had his hands on his

    Read more
  • “Subject to Change”

    MoMA P.S.1

    Photographic commissions tend to impose strict conditions, preconceiving for the artists involved a good part of their materia poetica. A photographer who accepts a commission has to walk a narrow path between resisting and submitting to its limitations. If he tends to either side in the extreme he is likely to come up with little.

    The Institute for Art and Urban Resources gave grants last fall to four photographers to work in the vicinity of Project Studios I, an area in Queens generally known as Long Island City. Each of the four has responded to the limitations of this assignment in a way that

    Read more
  • Tony DeLap

    Robert Elkon Gallery

    Some years ago, Tony DeLap was making square, monochromatic canvases whose angles were beveled into curves. His current show offers smaller pieces in which mismatched shapes are consolidated and abbreviate each other. The pairing of forms is decided according to a geometrical system, so that this work stands somewhere among that of Dorothea Rockburne, Robert Mangold and Al Held. The theme DeLap shares with Held and Rockburne is the mingling of squares, circles and triangles in such a way that they are at once autonomous and indistinguishable. But DeLap leaves us fewer clues to what his primary

    Read more
  • Michael Bishop

    Light Gallery

    Michael Bishop has abandoned the montage pictures for which he became well known several years ago, in favor of unadulterated color negative photographs made with a small camera. His current work desultorily follows two distinct impulses. On one hand, Bishop goes for small chaoses of perfunctory objects—oil drums brimming with trash, arrangements of poles and bars such as those that support highway signs or children’s swings. Bishop’s pictures attempt to reduce these metal networks to a colorful geometry, but fail to consider the plethora of superfluous background detail that his lens insists

    Read more
  • Brenda Miller

    Sperone Westwater Fischer

    Brenda Miller’s recent show, consisting of six wall pieces, continued basic methods she has used for several years. Lengths of sisal ranging from 1 to 40 inches were knotted and nailed directly to the wall at 1-inch intervals determined by an 80-by-80-inch grid faintly drawn in blue pencil. All six works contained exactly 160 strands of each of the 40 lengths. The problem, then, is one of variation: possible arrangements of the same material on the same grid.

    The strings were positioned according to strictly ordered systems recorded on graph paper. Numbers represented the various lengths. Individual

    Read more
  • Peter Campus

    The Kitchen

    Peter Campus’s show at The Kitchen consists of four color videotapes, Four Sided Tape, East Ended Tape, Third Tape and Six Fragments, and two closed-circuit low-light video installations, Lus and Num.

    For the past 15 years Campus has been involved with film, television and video communication. And in 1960 he received a Bachelor of Science degree in experimental psychology (he studied perception). Going backward, then, we trace his major interests: the mind’s workings; the perceptual mechanisms instigated in the mind by light; narration (television) created out of and for the mind, accompanying

    Read more
  • Lee Krasner

    The Pace Gallery | 508 W 25th Street

    Lee Krasner’s new collages suggest a concern with time both in conception and execution. The titles of the works are the temporal forms of verbs—Past Perfect Subjunctive, Present Conditional, Past Continuous, and so on. The collages are composed of charcoal drawings from 1937–40 when she studied with Hans Hofmann, accidental rubbings reflecting the untreated drawings on opposite clean sheets, and painted paper, fragmented and poignantly arranged in a general grid patterning recalling the “Small Paintings” hieroglyph series of 1946–50.

    Past Continuous is comprised of three panels broken up into

    Read more
  • Carlotta Corpron

    Marcuse Pfeifer Gallery

    Carlotta Corpron’s exhibition of photographs, “Form and Light: 1942–1949,” displays an interest in how light metamorphoses objects. In a statement available at the gallery, she writes: “I was fascinated by the geometric purity of a glass cube, and the wonderful patterns that were formed as the lights played over and through it.” And further, “If my work has any value it is due to its originality and my design background.” And yet in 1923, ten years before Carlotta Corpron bought her first camera, Lazlo Maholy-Nagy wrote in “Light—A Medium of Plastic Expression”: “Instead of having a plate which

    Read more
  • Lee Friedlander

    Light Gallery

    Painting knows no counterpart to that half-world which parallels that of serious photography. Photography, which finds uniquely prolific employment among advertisers and journalists, has bred an entire, coherent esthetic—trite, seductive and enmeshed in camera mechanics—alongside the concerns of its real masters. The pictures I am thinking of turn up in magazines like Popular Photography. These might be distorted nudes in vivid purple, gaping wide-angle views of skyscrapers seen from the street, or impossibly luscious views of flowers. Their ubiquitous presence, unfortunately, makes things

    Read more