San Francisco

Marco Maggi

Hosfelt Gallery

Like a lot of good art, part of the reason Marco Maggi’s work is engaging is that it brings so many other things to mind. His inventions and ideas evoke a range of allusions—to the complexity of Mayan codices or the horror vacui of some outsider art; to the refinement of line in a Hans Bellmer drawing or the dreamy, visceral oddness of one of Matta’s floating abstractions—but such multiple references don’t make his work seem any less original. About half of the pieces in this show are pencil drawings on clay-coated board. Exquisite accumulations of faint, needle-thin lines form complicated yet open-ended fields of tiny organic shapes, floating on a rectangle of pristine white. Because of their delicacy, these drawings are all but invisible at anything like a conventional viewing distance. (As with Persian miniatures, a magnifying glass would be a useful aid.) In a second group of works,

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