new-york

Lamar Peterson

Fredericks & Freiser

In Lamar Peterson’s painting Michael Jackson in Winter (all works 2005), the self-anointed King of Pop is portrayed in a wintry landscape with paper snowflakes fluttering around his bewildered face. The world’s most visible outsider, Jackson has tried without success to find any group that will have him as a member (his relationship with the Nation of Islam is the latest to have come to an acrimonious end), and now fumbles along in his own lonely, freakish way. All of which makes him a fitting subject for Peterson, whose paintings are populated by lost-looking figures, usually black, who almost always wear sunglasses, expensive clothes, and dopey, absentminded smiles, blithely ignorant of the sinister undercurrents that swirl beneath them.

Peterson is not out to impress anyone with technical prowess; there is something unassuming about these paintings, with their straightforward, almost

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