New York

Natvar Bhavsar, BEGIN, 1968, powdered pigment and acrylic medium on linen, 8' 1 1⁄2" × 12’.

Natvar Bhavsar

Aicon Gallery

Natvar Bhavsar’s exhibition at Aicon Gallery, “Beginnings,” focused on seventeen numinous abstractions—paintings and works on paper—made between 1968 and 1978. The artist, born in 1934 in Gujarat, India, has been a New Yorker for more than fifty years. But the use of dry pigment in his work, often combined with acrylic and oil mediums, can be partially traced back to the ancient Indian spring festival known as Holi, where revelers douse themselves in a vivid spectrum of powdered colors to celebrate love and solidarity.

The front half of the gallery’s ground floor included eight of Bhavsar’s paper works. UNTITLED XXI, 1973, perhaps the most extraordinary of the lot, is a riot of scintillating oranges, blues, and yellows. At one point it felt like a rendering of the universe just moments after the big bang; at another, it looked like a pulsating amoeba. To achieve such effects, Bhavsar uses

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