New York

Barnaby Furnas

Marianne Boesky Gallery | 509 West 24th Street

For his recent solo debut, Brooklyn-based painter Barnaby Furnas tackled life’s grand themes head-on. Love, death, and war are the subjects of the nine large canvases here, all of which brim with narrative and pictorial action. Yet the real drama lies not so much in the kissing, shooting, and running figures that populate Furnas’s pictures as in the artist’s knowing investigation of painterly form. Revisiting the dichotomies at the heart of modernist painting, Furnas manipulates the boundaries between figure and ground, form and formlessness, and figuration and abstraction, working in an idiosyncratic style that falls somewhere between Carroll Dunham’s and Kai Althoff’s. Exploring the fundamental issues of painting in scenes illustrating basic human topics, Furnas has crafted a neat coincidence of form and content that makes for exciting if not quite radical art.

Suicide III, 2002, one of

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