• Helen Altman

    Dunn and Brown Contemporary

    Helen Altman’s recent show “My Best Eggs” included fifteen “torch” drawings of animals ranging from pandas and lions to sad-sack dogs and mules. Her technique, developed several years ago, involves scorching marks into water-soaked paper with a propane torch, like toasting the sugar crust of a crème brûlée. It is an unforgiving way to work: The drawings must be finished quickly, before the paper dries and ignites. Erasures and touch-ups are impossible. Yet Altman manages to produce lush chiaroscuro renderings this way. The warm ochers and deep burnt siennas of the toasted paper play off the

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