New York

Troy Brauntuch

Petzel Gallery | West 18th Street

Coming on the heels of the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s recent “Pictures Generation, 1974–1984,” Friedrich Petzel’s retrospective—for that is what it was—dramatically underscored (often with intense poignancy) the thirty-year remove between Troy Brauntuch’s hesitant emergence among the original five artists in Douglas Crimp’s seminal 1977 “Pictures” show and his more recently attained master status. Indeed, this exhibition made clear that Brauntuch’s hand, if not his oblique sense of what constitutes a proper subject, has over the years grown suppler, suaver, and more capacious.

A broad array of the artist’s seemingly stray spurs to creation was presented here, aide-mémoire that make public the conventionally private: illustrations torn from magazines and newspapers; sketches, photographs, and snapshots of all types—ambient and ambivalent talismans of the artist’s slowly achieved, ambitiously

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