new-york

Hugh Steers

Richard Anderson

In his most recent paintings and smaller oil sketches, Hugh Steers chronicles contemporary urban life haunted by the presence of AIDS. Rendered in an increasingly sophisticated, painterly realism, which at once recalls the compositional drama of Caravaggio, the restless color of Pierre Bonnard, and the melancholy economy of Edward Hopper, Steers’ tableaux explore the complexities of living with the fear and reality of AIDS.

A number of Steers’ smaller works reveal his penchant for the sketchy brushwork and inviting “slice of life” scenes of French Impressionism. These include the poignant Paper Cut, 1991, in which one young man tenderly cares for another’s bleeding finger, as well as the gently comical Warts, 1992, in which another young man stands in front of a full-length mirror, horrified at the sight of his own, symbolically bandaged, genitalia. Yet these works take on greater significance

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. If you are a subscriber, sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW for only $50 a year—65% off the newsstand price—and get the print magazine plus full online access to this issue and our archive.*

Order the PRINT EDITION of the November 1992 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.