Boston

“Frieze”

Institute of Contemporary Art

If painting in general is back in vogue, as has been so jubilantly proclaimed, then wall painting’s revival cuts both ways: A more grandly scaled, “couture” version of painting, it also, paradoxically, boasts something of an anticommodity status. “Frieze” brought together five artists to present the state of large-scale murals (all works 1999)—which, in this show at least, exhibited strong ties to Pop, Op, psychedelia, and ’60s and ’70s graphic design.

John Armleder, who made his first wall paintings in 1967, was the relative old master here. For “Frieze,” he took on a selection of icons, knocking down or ratcheting up their impact so that they combined into one smoothly static look. On one wall, a series of concentric pink and black circles referenced the targets of Kenneth Noland and Jasper Johns but with the high-modernist marrow sucked out. On another wall, at a right angle to the

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