chicago

Angel Otero

Kavi Gupta Gallery | Elizabeth St

With the ebullience of youth—he’s not yet thirty—Puerto Rican–born, Brooklyn-based Angel Otero fills old bottles with new wine, bringing innovative and dramatic formal strategies to bear on conventional formats and subjects. Although his compositions often resemble traditional oil paintings, Otero rarely touches the surface of a canvas with a brush carrying paint. Instead, he crafts many of his works from “oil skins”—paint that has been poured on glass or Plexiglas, left to dry, and then peeled off in sheets. Sometimes Otero crumples the skins and uses them as building blocks in representational paintings; other times he collages the swathes together in full abstractions. In The Golden Vase (all works 2009), wadded-up oil skins erupt in colorful expressionist flowers on a dark field—a juxtaposition of frenzy and repose—the scattered shards of chunky paint simulating the bravura brushwork

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