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Raphy Sarkissian

Raphy Sarkissian is a contributor to the Brooklyn Rail.

Sean Scully: A Wound in a Dance with Love

A leading champion of contemporary artmaking, Sean Scully has come to project his image of an artist as a formalist conundrum, as intimated by the above metaphor that exudes a sense of pathos.

Rachel Lee Hovnanian: Angels Listening

In Hovnanian’s exhibition the definitions of medium and message, artist and spectator, addresser and addressee, sacred and secular, along with the aesthetic and the real, have been rendered interdependent.

Robert C. Morgan: The Loggia Paintings: Early and Recent Work

Severe yet expressive, hermetic yet lucid, circumspect yet luxuriant, the geometric abstractions painted by Robert C. Morgan are absorbing explorations of form.

To Bend the Ear of the Outer World: Conversations on contemporary abstract painting

To Bend the Ear of the Outer World, an engaging exhibition astutely curated by Gary Garrels, brings together abstract works by forty-one artists in Gagosian’s two Mayfair galleries.

Liliane Tomasko: Evening Wind

One of the most intriguing exhibitions of recent years is Liliane Tomasko: Evening Wind at the Edward Hopper House. Scattered somewhat randomly upon the walls of Hopper’s living room and dining room in Nyack, the abstract painterly marks on surfaces of paper, notwithstanding their aggregation of luscious streaks and seductive palettes of subdued and brilliant hues, register as self-contained entities. Yet the seeming abstractions of Tomasko, framed within her overall body of work and the context of Hopper’s self-absorbed human figures, translate as conduits to the perceptual states of the human subject, as cryptographs of the subconscious, as passages toward the unconscious. These works compel us to reconsider the referent of the term “abstraction.”

Richard Hearns: Nomad

Intentional and accidental marks of the artist’s hand, purposeful and irresolute expressions of gesture, vigorous and reticent swaths of paint: these are the oppositions that govern the gestural idiom of Richard Hearns, a prolific painter of abstracted landscapes.

Arthur Cohen: Ripped Terre Verte

The enigmatic paintings of Arthur Cohen, mounted elegantly on the walls of the Scully Tomasko Foundation, exude both linearity and painterliness. In this exhibition, titled Ripped Terre Verte, lyrical abstractions blur the boundaries between the finished and unfinished, between unity and disunity of forms, recalling the tenets of the outstanding exhibition Unfinished: Thoughts Left Visible, held at the Met Breuer in 2016.

Sean Scully: The Shape of Ideas

Here the boundaries of form and content dissipate, as medium and message are rendered interchangeable, undermining the closure of meaning and anticipating those interpretations that emerge from the perception and intuition of the observing subject.


The Brooklyn Rail

SEPT 2023

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