• John Wesley

    Daniel Weinberg Gallery

    While walking around this tight show of seven works spanning thirty years of John Wesley’s career, my friends and I concurred that although Wesley is not among those on the tips of the tongues of hedge fund collectors, so-called edgy curators, or, sadly, many younger painters, there is more to look at in his work than in many rooms at MoMA.

    “Retroactive Pop” and “meta-representation,” two idiosyncratic terms that Donald Judd used to negotiate the strange, powerful paintings of John Wesley, resonate even as Judd noted, in an early review, seemingly structural concerns: “Most of the paintings are

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  • Will Fowler

    David Kordansky Gallery

    In his 2004 debut at David Kordansky Gallery, Will Fowler positioned painting as an analogue of paleontology by playfully exploring the fossils of modernist syntax. Deploying straight-from-the-tube acrylic colors in riotous assemblies of geometric shapes—circles, squares, triangles, and snaking paths—that cover each painting’s surface, Fowler pushed familiar, slyly referential forms into complex compositions, suggesting a rich, even allegorical potential for the medium without a whiff of irony or nostalgia.

    For an untitled diptych in that show, Fowler collaged and then partially painted over

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  • Mathias Poledna

    Hammer Museum

    Mathias Poledna has designated his works “fragments,” a term that could apply to their subject matter as well as to their relation to one another. Poledna has produced just a few short films: Actualité, 2001; Western Recording, 2003; Version, 2004; and now Crystal Palace, 2006. Each one is the centerpiece of a series of highly controlled cinematic environments in which every aspect of the presentation is significant, from the film gauge and stock to the make of the projector, the configuration of the screen, and the absence or presence of seating. Above all, he exploits the potential of the

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