New York

Christopher Deeton

ATM Gallery

It’s not immediately clear how Christopher Deeton achieves the elementary symmetry evident in the three large paintings from his new series that were shown recently at ATM Gallery’s Twenty-seventh Street space. Revealing no brushwork, the ominous black shapes that inhabit these works hover like darkly numinous apparitions against their raw-canvas backgrounds. Formed by the pull of gravity, they are the result of the artist’s manipulation of support as opposed to medium. This method of moving the panels in order to direct the flow of pigment across their surfaces—at the constant risk of indelible false moves—suggests a certain meticulousness that resonates intriguingly with the paintings’ soaring, obelisk-like figures. Nevertheless, the only obviously chance effects occur at the works’ peripheries, as at the bottom edge of Number 64 (all works 2005), where pebblelike islands of inky pigment

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