Los Angeles

Peter Halley

Grant Selwyn Fine Art

Recently a friend of mine showed me the tiny silvery chip he’d pulled out of his brand new Ericsson cell phone. He had purchased it in New York, and although it was alleged to have global reach, for some reason it didn’t work in Europe. The delicate little object—expensive, futuristic—reminded me of something, but I couldn’t figure out what, until I opened the envelope of Peter Halley transparencies I’d picked up after viewing his recent paintings in New York. Seen in the spacious Manhattan gallery, Halley’s new works pack quite a visual punch; reduced to a few inches and carried across the Atlantic, all that is left is the neat geometry of a digital chip. Size matters, and Halley’s six massive canvases in bright colors and glistening metallics are luxurious, even magnificent, but still, what exactly are they? A decade and a half ago, the artist asserted: “Even though my work is

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