new-york

Raoul de Keyser

Brooke Alexander

Raoul De Keyser’s paintings are at once familiar and elusive, banal and eccentric. Well known in Europe, this Belgian artist is regularly included in important surveys such as “Documenta IX,” and last year’s “Der Zerbrochene Spiegel” (The broken mirror), as well as the more recent “Unbound: Possibilities in Painting” at the Hayward Gallery. De Keyser’s first American solo show suggests that, at the age of 65, he is self-assured enough to conceal the effort that goes into attaining a given effect. The thin paint and limited palette he uses belie the careful layering from which De Keyser constructs the surfaces of his paintings. Through completely abstract means, his work attains the dreamy irony of Marcel Broodthaers and René Magritte. Indeed, De Keyser’s abstraction has little to do with purity; it seems based, instead, on the suggestion of a resemblance to other paintings—whether they

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