chicago

John Colt

Perimeter Gallery

John Colt’s paintings evoke the evanescent splendor of sunlit tidepools, rippling ponds, august gardens—little worlds where desire awakens. His luminous stained canvases usually show a few denizens of such places (minnows, starfish, snail shells, and a grasshopper are among the menagerie found within the 11 works shown here, all 1986), but the lightly drawn images appear mostly to give a nominal sense of place to these gentle explorations of color.

Born in Madison, Wisconsin, and a member of the art faculty at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee for 30 years, Colt has pursued a distinguished regional career. His work, though, is hardly Midwestern in temperament. Its gauzy, shimmering color is exotic and sensuous, reminiscent of a tropical William Baziotes. Colt’s paintings have less of the sense of the fabulous that permeates Baziotes’ later works but share their lyrical, dreamlike space.

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