The Thinking Reed
We need more and different flags.
What is the worm that spoils exultation?
One who has become all eyes and does not see.
To try to understand is to court misunderstanding.
Not to know but to go on.
Anything is a mirror.
There are two endless directions. In and out.
Taking its title from the above poem, and its content from Martin’s commitment to the complexity of simple forms, repetition and pattern, this wide-ranging exhibition brings together emerging artists who share a loose affinity with her approach.
Each of the artists makes use of patterning and geometry in the service of very different ends: some strident and definitive, and others the mere trace of an action—a memory of process. Meditative repetition mingles with blatant exposition, and pure formal concerns make their case alongside more conceptual strategies.
The inherent modesty of Ben Berlow’s delicate gouaches on forgotten paper supports belies their impact. Geometries suggested by the existing folds in a flattened paper bag or repurposed envelope are honored and allowed to emerge, limned in blocks of pigment with straight lines that play against the torn and weathered surface.
Originally from British Columbia, Amy Brener makes her Chelsea debut with sculptures positioned somewhere between the geologic and futuristic. With their complex strata of poured resin and embedded materials, these works make monuments to both natural light and the microchip.
Woodstock, NY resident Tony Cox’s embroidered canvases meld hard-edge with handicrafts, bring an innocent soulfulness to conventions of Modernism and emphasize the importance of repetition in both meditation and psychedelia.
Gabriel Dawe was born in Mexico City where he was surrounded by the intensity and color of the culture. His awe-inspiring large-scale installations involve a rainbow of thread strung floor-to-ceiling, and bring colorfield painting and geometric abstraction into a three dimensional, experiential realm. This will be Dawe’s New York City debut.
Mingling the formal conventions of grid-paintings with a broad Midwestern accent, Michelle Grabner’s gingham paintings and stately silverpoint works prove that humor and beauty are not mutually exclusive.
Mark Hagen’s rugged mono- and duo-chromatic geometries result from a unique painting process of brushed, poured, cast, and squeegeed pigments on burlap. The artist gives equal weight to surface and composition, exulting in pattern and an intricate and painterly texture.
British-born and Berlin-based artist Terry Haggerty creates vibrant paintings and murals using the sophisticated formalist vocabulary of geometric abstraction. By combining the traditions of Minimalism, Op Art and the Pop immediacy of eye-catching signage, the artist stakes out unique territory.
A practitioner of a highly personalized form of Zen meditation, Los Angeles artist Zach Harris’s intricately carved wood constructions and complexly patterned paintings on canvas manifest that practice’s determined focus and repetition, as well as engaging with sophisticated approaches to composition and spatial/illusionistic dynamics.
Many of our best artists have been great writers, and Andrew Kuo is no exception. Diaristic, tragicomic, tweet-length self-examinations that read as an emotional play-by-play are wedded to complex info-graphic imagery and a highly evolved color-sense.
Operating in the confluence of sculpture and utilitarian design, Jamisen Ogg contributes an obsessively fluted picnic table that evokes both nostalgic Americana and Classical architecture.
A former diamond expert, New York-based Yoshiaki Mochizuki’s exceptionally subtle small-scale works carry a gem’s outsized power. They are made by building up layers of clay on gessoed panels, sometimes covered with reflective gilding, which are then burnished and inscribed with repeating intersecting or concentric lines. Their delicate faceted surfaces change dramatically when seen from different angles.