new-york

Agnes Martin

Pace | 32 East 57th Street

If there is such a thing as intellectual beauty, then these magisterial gray paintings do more than exemplify it, they embody it. The works are nominally minimalist, in that they eschew excess. They achieve their effect of subdued grandeur with very little—black pencil lines and bands of gray and white paint, varied in spacing and thickness and laid out on a resolutely flat, figure-size canvas. The works intimate heroic scale rather than bloat to wall size. Their guiding principle is parallelism: however subtly different in surface and size, all the elements of the paintings remain parallel to one another. They themselves are parallels, suggesting that the exhibition as a whole is a meditation on the fundamentality of parallelism, perhaps as a trope for the sense of eternity: parallels imply the timeless and spaceless. Moreover, the formality of parallelism concentrates visual being toward

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