new-york

Robert Overby

Jessica Fredericks Gallery

The work of Robert Overby (1935–93) admits perhaps two overriding interpretations, distinct but not incompatible. On the one hand, his cast latex reliefs of architectural environments and fixtures belong to the history of the late-’60s/early-’70s experiments in antiform, process art, post-Minimalism, what have you. From the perspective of art history—or, more precisely, an art history of “movements”—it is precisely these works that constitute the salvageable core of the artist’s output. But the show at Jessica Frederick’s gave the impression that, in addition to the “good” process-art style of the casts, Overby worked in at least a second manner, a “bad” representational style of painting that is an amalgam of Richard Lindner, Tom Wesselmann, Nancy Grossman, and David Salle, among others. The fact that he worked simultaneously and prolifically in various other modes breaks down the simple

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