Los Angeles

Thomas Nozkowski

ACE Gallery

THE ART-REVIEW FORMAT tends to encourage nutshell accounts of an artist's output, which shouldn't be so hard in the case of Thomas Nozkowski. If you're at all familiar with his work, you'll recognize his paintings when you see them. They're generally rectangular, consistently rendered in oil on canvas board or linen on panel. They tend to be precise and defined, without fetishizing the straight edge or roll of masking tape; the hand of the artist is apparent, but they don't seem to aspire to the expressionistic; and while associations abound, Nozkowski's paintings fall more into the category of abstraction than representation. As for the palette, well, anything goes. And the paintings included in his latest show at Ace, which date from 1995–99, fall squarely within the tightly defined parameters I've laid out here.

The whole wonderful problem with Nozkowski is that he has managed to make

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