• John McLaughlin

    Laguna Art Museum

    John McLaughlin started painting in his forties. The son of a Massachusetts Superior Court judge, he served in both world wars and when not in uniform was in business. A Japan specialist for American military intelligence during wartime, a part-time dealer in Japanese prints afterward, he was sufficiently drawn to Japan to move there in 1935. Perhaps it was inevitable that he would come to be seen as an artist who brought Japanese thought to bear on Euro-American painting, and this is the view that curator Susan C. Larsen promotes in her catalogue essay for this retrospective in part by way of

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  • Sue Williams

    Regen Projects

    Sue Williams has taken doodling to remarkable places, the grimmest areas a mind and body can go, or rather the doodle has taken her and her audience there. Tidbits of her autobiography—that she was physically abused by slimes—are by now well-known. In her paintings trauma is viewed with both objectivity and a dark mirth. Part of their power, why they have worked, is in their presentation of a type of comedy no one had really seen before—what Americans are now afraid to call black humor—especially from a woman, and in what medium? Painting? The bluntest approach to picturemaking in a long time.

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  • Jim Hodges

    Marc Foxx Gallery

    Pushing daintiness to the point where it becomes strangely unsettling, Jim Hodges makes work that produces “meaning” in the form of disconnected clues. The ephemeral, somewhat ambiguous works assembled here under the title “Yes” flirt with narrative coherence and concrete, physical presence, without placing pressure on the viewer to construct a signifying chain. Unlike a number of young contemporary artists who have taken to narrative-laden visual poetics with a self-conscious relationship to history and memory (Kathleen Schimmert comes to mind), Hodges constructs a symbolic economy that deflects

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