New York

Lisa Yuskavage

David Zwirner Gallery/Zwirner&Worth

If Jan Vermeer shopped at Kmart, or if Pierre Bonnard were interested in what it might feel like to be pregnant, then their paintings might resemble Lisa Yuskavage’s new work. As it is, no one makes pictures like hers. Showing in New York for the first time since 2003, Yuskavage proved several things. First, that she is her generation’s best colorist, and that her toxic-sunset palette serves to highlight rather than obscure her expertise with heaving, tendril-like line. Second, that the narcissistic nymphets and tit-goddesses for which she has been both celebrated and reviled have matured into complex emotional dyads. In these canvases, even when a figure appears alone, she shares a dream space with iconic props that are her avatars.

A third achievement of these meditative, gorgeously weird paintings is that—dependent as they are on the old equation of luscious paint with female nudity—the

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