Nikos Baikas

Rebecca Camhi Gallery

For more than a decade Nikos Baikas has been creating enigmatic works in black and white. In his most recent drawings on paper, lead pencil lines have been so densely applied that the paper supports seem to merge with their skinlike surfaces. The result is paper that has been rendered so relieflike by bulges and dents that it resembles a sheet of lead. The compositions are tightly structured, with an acute surface tension, and the images that appear are highly stylized. Any modeling is minimal, and pictorial depth is scant, so the viewer must dig deep and hard to discern the objects hidden within these cryptic pieces.

Baikas’ work represents an obsessive distillation of various strategies lifted from different genres and periods in the history of art, but he is not in the least concerned with appropriation. His hermetic images for the most part engage formal issues, such as balance, symmetry,

to keep reading

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

Not registered for 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 March 1996 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

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