New York

Alfred Jensen

The Pace Gallery | 508 W 25th Street

For Alfred Jensen the world was reducible to systems of numbers, which is why they were magical and mysterious to him—full of archaic charge and unsystematic sensing. Via an eccentrically dense painterliness, Jensen made numerical systems sensuous—turning mind into sensuous matter—in a poignant metaphor of hope for the reconciliation of science and art.

This golden dream animates one of his late works, Between Times in Art and Science, 1980, one of four studies for his Changes and Communication mural of the same year. A colorful grid of obscure signs hovers in a limbo of indecipherable meaning. The script has the hocus-pocus quasi-hieroglyphic look of scientific notation; indeed, Jensen exploits its obscure look to the scientifically unlearned. His is an esoteric script, in the manner of so-called Kufic writing, and with the same exotic point. There is a summarizing impulse in Jensen, a

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