New York

Giles Lyon

Kinz, Tillou + Feigen

Looking at the extravagant surfaces of Giles Lyon’s abstract paintings, it’s hard to tell whether he’s doodling his way into significance or just having fun. The artist’s work has been hyped with all kinds of “advanced” theories—it’s been suggested that his paintings are stagings of a neo-organic realm produced by genetic engineering, and that their colors have the acidic tang of the world glimpsed through hallucinogenics—but their delirium seems to have more to do with creating an effect of irony than with embodying drug-induced fantasies. Gesture becomes self-mocking in Lyon’s paintings, and despite the “tossed,” spontaneous look, the forms are carefully drawn and delimited by conspicuously manicured contours. Lyon is not so much parodying spontaneity as he is bringing it under control, making it seem more mischievous than liberating.

Lyon lets us know that the days of “profound” abstraction

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