New York

Moira Dryer

Jay Gorney Modern Art

These first two posthumous shows reveal that Moira Dryer was an artist who combined pragmatic experimentalism with a deep concentration of feeling. Dryer promised to be a central painter of her generation thanks to her completely persuasive (because deeply intuitive) synthesis of two apparently incompatible strains of post–Abstract Expressionism: on the one hand, the literalism of Robert Ryman’s “investment” of the entirety of the painting-object (edges, hardware, and so on, along with the painted surface), and on the other, the allusive, quasi-literary nature of Ross Bleckner’s historicism. To do so, of course, she had to jettison central aspects of those artists’ works as well: the “minimalism” of Ryman, his fundamentally dandyish preference for the least-marked means to achieve a particular effect, or Bleckner’s sanction of conventional representation with its concomitant potential for

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