Chicago

Anita David

Artemisia Gallery

Good taste—what “good” is it, anyway?—abounds in Anita David’s recent series of paintings. The seven monochrome works that comprised this installation function as emblems of esthetic seriousness, 48-by-48-inch squares of plush gray, made using an inventory of painterly effects. The names that emblazon their surfaces are also filled with associations of a particularly tasteful sort: “Gucci,” “Bloomingdale’s,” “Comme des Garçons,” and so on, an impressive roster of trendsetting stores whose nominative presence sabotages the dignity of these painted fields.

The humor of this conceptual exercise is obvious—equating paintings with purses, scarves, even designer shopping bags, as sites for the reifying logotypes of high fashion. Less apparent here is an examination of textural sufficiency; of the sort of surface necessary to make each work signify painting rather than stage backdrop, to be seen

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