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New York

Jesse Hensel

5 Technically Perfect  
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Lui Shtini at Van de Weghe Fine Art February 26th, 2009 - April 11th, 2009
Posted 3/27/09

Lui Shtini’s paintings are technically perfect; flat and photorealist, plastic paintings. However, the iconography seems purposefully strange. There is a disconnect in the compulisvity of the painting and the unobsessive subject matter. The weirdness seems almost insincere, I secretely suspect the artist is hamming it up to be a more "conceptual" artist. For example; despite the unfortunate misspellings of his name and the painting of a toilet next to a wall sprouting mushrooms, the brushwork te... [more]

5 (photo)Realist Painting  
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David Kassan at Gallery Henoch March 12th, 2009 - April 4th, 2009
Posted 3/27/09

The problem with photorealist paintings is that they are entierly dependent on their source material. “Call Box”, “Peeling Paint and Through” succeed because the photographs have confusing content. In these works Kassan plays with the photorealist illusion by painting quasi-two dimensional spaces. These works focus on details in worn wheat pasted plywood (the source material has probably come from one of the city’s construction sites). The compositions are overly centrist, but here the detail fo... [more]

2 Surface Stitches  
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Michael Raedecker at Andrea Rosen Gallery March 14th, 2009 - April 18th, 2009
Posted 3/27/09

Simple large washed canvasses with embroidery stitched through the surface. Throughout there is a feeling of fog, air so heavy it can be stitched through. “Superficial”  is a detail of a dining room table. The knife and fork fall through the foreground and the subtle chromatic details of the tablecloth keep it lively. “Hang”  is by far my favorite, wispy windblown and forlorn. Bittersweet fluttering clothes hang loose from the drying lines and drift in the thick stormy air. Some of the other wo... [more]

3 Mermaid Reconsidered  
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Wei Dong at Nicholas Robinson Gallery February 26th, 2009 - April 11th, 2009
Posted 3/27/09

Wei Dong’s exquisite crosshatch technique is reminiscent of Cézanne and my grandmother’s wallpaper. Muted soft tones, caressable female flesh blending into decaying fish bodies. My first thought was that this might me an attempt at subverting the male gaze, but the gender of the painter casts this in doubt. Are the paintings simply twisted ruminations on “the scent of a woman”? Is the, not so subtle, statement that women either porcelain or meat? Is the subject matter merely a springboard to de... [more]

8 Beautiful Men  
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Ain Cocke at Robert Goff Gallery March 6th, 2009 - April 9th, 2009
Posted 3/27/09

Men in uniform who love each other painted proficiently with feeling. This exhibition made my day. Mr. Cooke shows that there is no need to be pornographic to prove a point. It is sufficient to be practiced and sincere. The paintings fill me joy and pride. I think of the men my grandparents fought with in WWII, I think of those I know fighting today. I remember with pride my friends who are no longer closeted, and the platonic bonds between men. I recall D.H. Lawrence’s pastoral passages in “Son’s an... [more]

343web The Good Gimmick  
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Philip-Lorca diCorcia at David Zwirner- 525 W. 19th February 27th, 2009 - March 28th, 2009
Posted 3/25/09

A seamless aluminum line wraps around the room displaying hundreds of small photographs at eye level. It is a display gimmick, but not all gimmicks are unsuccessful. The elongated format creates a cinematic feel. The overwhelming flutter of images attacks like spam and it becomes useless to dwell on any one frame. Themes wash over the viewer- meat, sex, light, color, reflection, transparency, and significant detail. [more]


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