New York

Robert Harms

David Beitzel Gallery

The lush setting of Robert Harms’ Amagansett studio serves as the point of departure for his radiant abstract paintings. In many of the paintings Harms takes a recognizable image from the landscape and attacks it with arbitrary marks until it nearly disappears from view—an old Willem de Kooning trick—and the resulting bramble tantalizes the viewer with the insistence of a half-remembered name. The remaining traces of the landscape and human figure haunt the work. The clumps of olive, white, and blue in Side of the Road, 1995, might be a pastoral valley by Cézanne viewed through the haziness of memory, and the yellow swipes glimpsed in the desultory cross-strokes of Fallen Yellow, 1995, suggest a Georg Baselitz–like specter flickering in and out of its surroundings. In Hollyhock, 1994, a close-cropped view of foliage becomes an allover web tinged with green and maroon.

Deriving their power

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