New York

John Walker

Cunningham Ward

John Walker’s paintings are Studio School, Tenth Street, ’50s. The scale is heroic. The geometric rectangles must be read as antigeometric. The color is predominantly earthy, muddy, primal. For the added touch of personal synthesis there are the pieces of canvas collage out of Cubism, the tentative black lines from Matisse. Slapdash and thrown together with machismo, these paintings rage tough. The philosophical discourse that envelops them must be dragged out of the existential closet. The references, the ambitions, the influences are all ripe for devastating parody. It’s as if the artist has been in deepfreeze for the last 25 years.

I see Walker’s paintings in a hostile historical environment, and for that reason they become more than what they are; they assume a thoughtful character, which makes me want to re-create a more tolerant world. They trigger this action because they so clearly

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