new-york

Luc Tuymans, Jacket, 2011, oil on canvas, 73 7/8 x 54 3/4".

Luc Tuymans

David Zwirner | 519 West 19th Street

Luc Tuymans, Jacket, 2011, oil on canvas, 73 7/8 x 54 3/4".

Has it ever been summer in Luc Tuymans’s paintings? I doubt it. So by titling his most recent exhibition “The Summer Is Over,” was Tuymans just promising more of what we’ve learned to expect from him? Not quite. Although the saturnine sensibility and “diagnostic gaze” that his work has consistently evoked over the past two decades have hardly lightened, there is a difference. A typical strategy of his has been to paint things that at first glance appear innocuous (although his tersely tremulous, mordantly taciturn touch in and of itself may make you want to look at them suspiciously) while letting it be known that their real referents are indelibly stained with the blood of modern European history—redolent of the Nazi era, say, or of Belgian colonialism in the Congo. Now, in the seven large recent paintings shown here, Tuymans has trained his eye on his everyday surroundings.

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