New York

Robert Mangold

John Weber Gallery

In his new paintings Robert Mangold has altered the outside shape of the canvas as a whole, destroying the perfect rectangle in favor of a distorted perimeter. Each painting is composed of two canvases side by side, the line between them functioning as a formal drawn line. An “X” is penciled in from upper to lower boundaries, carefully off-center, just missing the central line at the crossing. These two ideas at once displace the recognizable shape of the canvases—Mangold plays with the ambiguity of his defined forms, purposely avoiding the expected division or shape. So far these are familiar themes and problems, related to fitting arcs and triangles within a confined boundary area. But the complexity of that problem increases in these works. Not only the off-set sides of the canvas itself (subtle, barely distorted), but the crossed line arching over the canvas surface, fool the eye into

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and receive the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the March 1979 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.