reviews

  • David Grant

    Newspace

    For a few years now, David Grant has been stretching fabrics and skins over armatures and padding, toying with the interface of surface and what lies beneath, but never before have his works so encouraged viewers to undress them with their eyes. The new wall-mounted relief sculptures recently on view consist of various materials stretched over steel-and-fiberglass frames on which Grant has constructed hidden assemblages of found objects. The coverings are pulled tight around the edges and cinched in at key points with thread and buttons, resulting in the kind of oscillation between specificity

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  • Alicia Beach

    Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects

    How do you get a gestural abstract painting to yield clean, precise hard edges? Just slice it up. That might sound glib, but it describes the simple logic at work in Alicia Beach’s recent projects.

    Actually, rather than cut finished works into pieces, Beach paints on long, deep slats of birch plywood that are hung vertically with spaces between. While the stripes she brushes freehand along the faces of the slats are loose, she exploits one of the axioms of gestural painting—that fluid brushwork eventually hits the straight edge of the panel or canvas. Each work consists of a combination

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  • Ingrid Calame

    Karyn Lovegrove Gallery

    One good look at a painting by Ingrid Calame will reveal that the warm critical reception extended to her oeuvre amounts to mountebank persiflage. The gimmick behind the project—Calame traces the shapes of sidewalk stains, then transfers them to aluminum and fills them in with sign-painter’s enamel—was flimsy enough to begin with, and by now it’s just fatuous. The device is intended to bring in chance and, I suppose, free up the control of the ego, but it’s not the cultural anthropology that her fans claim it is. Her process was recently given full view in Los Angeles: Three plans of

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  • Gary Boas

    New Image Art Gallery

    “Gary Boas does not consider himself an artist, although he might be a kind of outsider artist. He calls what he does a hobby.” New York Times critic Ken Johnson’s account doesn’t begin to grapple with the problem of why one would want to consider Boas’s photographs under the sign of art. The fact that Boas distances himself from the job title “artist”—as well as Johnson’s useless invocation of “outsider artist” highlights what’s at stake: that photography at its best may not be quite the same thing as art. From the time of Atget’s self-designation as a maker and seller of “documents

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