new-york

View of “Ed Moses,” 2018. From left: Crumel, 2004; Ignon, 2006. Photo: Casey Kelbaugh.

Ed Moses

Albertz Benda

Ed Moses’s miniretrospective at Albertz Benda, which featured a dozen of the artist’s canvases, was also a memorial to his stunning achievements. The earliest, Peeleb, was made in 1998; the most recent, Krak-BLK, 2014, was created only four years before his death this year, at the age of ninety-one. The paintings testified to his versatility and endlessly exploratory creativity. He was an action painter, as he acknowledged—but there were few action painters who were as “open to change,” to quote his friend Frank Gehry. Moses called himself the Mutator, implying that his art was in a constant state of metamorphosis. The sobriquet is certainly apt. It was difficult to imagine that the same hand made all the works in this show. Some of the images were painterly, others linear—thus the contradiction between pieces such as Bray-Fale, with its rich, smeary browns and blacks, and Ignon, with its

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