new-york

Alex Katz

Marlborough Gallery | New York

Donald Kuspit has already noted the “doppelgängers” in the recent work of Alex Katz, seeing them as “a way of suggesting a tentative opposition where there seems only unified image.” The opposition may be “tentative” because, finally, Katz believes, strangely for such a secularist, in an almost mystical oneness. There are not only twins in Katz’ paintings; all his characters look like siblings, members of the family Stonewaller. This and their famous flattened-out quality make it clear that Katz is rejecting what Robbe-Grillet calls “the myth of depth.” Art, he says, is all surface. (Why else are there ten hats and at least two babushkas in this latest cache of canvases? As the only distinguishing marks on his mannequins, they undermine all his subjects’ claims to real individuality.) This seems a modest enough realm, mere appearance, to stake out, almost a shyness on Katz’ part, so

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