new-york

Yeardley Leonard

Dee / Glasoe

EACH OF YEARDLEY LEONARD'S CANVASES consists of about ten to twenty horizontal stripes of color, plainly hand painted (no taped edges) in semitranslucent coats. The colors—consistently intense, even fulsome, with lots of purples and oranges, like a layered cocktail of wine, sherbet, and nail polish—tend to lighten and aerate at the top of each work, suggesting sky over land. But Leonard's horizontals resist being read as horizon lines, and each stripe—even the softer ones at the top, which are nonetheless insistently present—functions equally as both “figure” and “ground,” whether it is optically recessive or emergent, translucent or relatively opaque, flagrantly synthetic or soothingly naturalistic. Furthermore, the number and variety of stripes foil a landscape reading. (There seems to be no correlation between how big a painting is and how many stripes it contains;

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