los-angeles

Benjamin Carlson, untitled, 2016, oil, acrylic, Flashe paint, and ink-jet print on linen, 36 × 34".

Benjamin Carlson

Park View/Paul Soto

Benjamin Carlson, untitled, 2016, oil, acrylic, Flashe paint, and ink-jet print on linen, 36 × 34".

If press releases have largely become baroque exercises in obscurantist prose, the text announcing Benjamin Carlson’s solo show in Los Angeles was refreshingly straightforward, even laconic, in its description of “five paintings depicting still lifes in front of a window.” And indeed, the titleless exhibition offered exactly this, five variations on its theme, one of which was installed between the apartment-gallery’s actual windows (a decision both pragmatic and conceptually rich), while another was inserted into an empty closet. Situated in the proximity of apertures to the surrounding neighborhood, the untitled paintings, all 2016, the majority incorporating both oil paint and pasted digital prints, assumed a comparable role as portals, redoubling the representational logic of their scenes even as the disjuncts between the objects depicted complicated them. Each work establishes,

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