New York

Jeff Elrod / Lisa Ruyter

Pat Hearn Gallery

Viewing the work of Jeff Elrod and Lisa Ruyter side by side was akin to overhearing a dialogue, if not quite a duel, over painting’s flatness: Who can achieve the freshest results in this regard? One senses a fair amount of ambition on the part of these artists to carve out a space for themselves in what has become a cluttered constellation of young painters, and they often achieved admirable results in their recent show.

Elrod is a Houston-based artist known for his large acrylic paintings of scratches, lines, and loops that originate as drawings made with an outmoded computer graphics program. His method allows him to improvise, using the mouse to rapidly produce a sort of automatic drawing, and then modify the results, thickening, elongating, or erasing lines. Once satisfied with the image, he prints out his “drawing” and projects it onto a canvas, masking the lines off with tape before

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