Johnnie Ross

57 STUX + Haller Gallery

At first glance, Johnnie Ross seems to offer a straight reprise of American color-field painting while maybe asking just a few new questions. But the colorful canvases, with dynamic quadrilateral shapes derived from both cutting into and adding to the basic rectangle, are hardly direct derivations or replays of the formalistic strains of abstract painting that dominated the ’60s and early ’70s. At second glance these paintings appear to defy the kind of data-conscious stocktaking of measurements and limits involving the statements of optical and perceptual relationships that were the special domain of classic color-field painting. Instead, despite their bare-it-all looks and what-you-see-is-what-you-get come-on, Ross’ paintings impress as emphatically lyrical creations dealing in the evocative aspects of abstraction.

Of these paintings, it can confidently be said that the compositions are

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