Robert Beauchamp

Monique Knowlton Gallery

When Neo-Minimalism arrives, which no doubt will be soon—for history and the manipulation of the market are one and the same these ambiguously avant-garde days—one of the neoexpressionist survivors will be Robert Beauchamp. Like Flack, he offers a tasteful expressionism, but it is mature. That is, Beauchamp manages to do two things with it that are not conventionally associated with it: he uses it to convey a state of postanxiety (reflecting his stay in the South?) if not unequivocal happiness, and through the figures that seem to effervesce out of the paint, he turns it into a kind of testing ground for a minimal unit of paint mark, on the order of a phoneme or morpheme (ideally their hybrid). The sphincter of “expressive” speech is not quite uncontrollable here. Irrepressible paint is controlled by spontaneous image, often demonic but always melodious. The “clowning” artist and his “

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