chicago

Sam Prekop

Jan Cicero Gallery

Sam Prekop’s new paintings are so small and pale they almost seem to fade out of view, but their wan delicacy is deceptive. His approach seems so casual, even aloof, that it is surprising how these little paintings read as simultaneously dreamy and attentive. It’s all of a piece, this mixture of what appears as relaxed diffidence with a sudden insistence and focus, and it resides in all aspects of his presentation here, from the sheer number of fairly similar canvases (nineteen in this exhibition, sixteen of which were done in the first three months of 1999) that seem to invite a rapid scan, to their intimate scale (the largest is fourteen by sixteen inches) and narrow range of earthy colors.

Prekop paints his surfaces in monochrome tones of tan or cream or gray and then accretes varying amounts of slight geometric visual incident across their bottom halves. Little squares and rectangles,

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