Friday, July 09, 2010

Spray! was only OK (I'm glad I went to other galleries after this one)

From "um, alright" to "DAMNNN", here's the beginning of what I thought about four exhibits I checked out in Chelsea:

Today I intended on going to only two exhibits in Chelsea. Given the HIGH concentration of galleries in that area, there is always to possibility of spending an entire afternoon or evening gallery hopping. For this evening, I ended my hopping with four gallery visits which were (ranked below from "eh" to "WHOA"):
This review will explore Spray!
"...these works celebrate spray paint's ability to create atmosphereic layers that seem to extend beyond the frame."  D'Amelio Terras Press Release

Spray! was an exhibit I was looking forward to, but I was personally disappointed by most of the work there. Fortunately there were a couple of pieces I felt were worth bringing to your attention. 
The quote above from its press release reminds me of Dan Christensen's  Pavo, 1968, Acrylic on canvas which can be viewed here. This belongs to a series of loop spray paintings he created in his career. Beautiful, simple and airy from the valve of a spray can shows how he was able to control the medium. The various intensity of the colors makes the loops feel like they are flowing in and out of the canvas as well as overlapping and intertwining with one another. Makes me think of dozens of hula-hoops being scattered about. Hula-hoops are airy and fun as well as this piece.
"Armed with a palette knife and a spray gun, Keltie Ferris grapples with the idiom of gestural abstraction."
This piece of Keltie Ferris had me staring at it for a while. There was so much going on in the piece. It felt chaotic like it wanted to be geometric but wasn't allowed to or that it wanted to be random with no structure but the few rectangles in the piece wasn't going to allow that to happen. I walked around and ended up coming back to the piece. I even went to the gallery website on my phone and saw that it photographed completely differently and that just made the piece that much more interesting. I can't find a good image of the work I'm referring to but you can see similar pieces online at
There was one other piece that was a white on white painting that I thought was cool and I'm completely blanking on the name of the artist. That makes it hard for me to find an image or similar images of the work to show you. Once I do I'll update the post.

Bottom line on Spray! Other than 2 or 3 pieces out of the 11 shown, Spray! was a blah experience in my opinion. Experience it for yourself though!!! Address and links are at the top of this post.
This is only one person's opinion. If you agree, disagree or feel indifferent about the show, let me know.
All the artists on view at Spray! are:
Dan Christensen, Keltie Ferris, Katharina Grosse, Jacqueline Humphries, Rosy Keyser, Yayoi Kusama, Robert Moskowitz, Jules Olitski, Stephen Prina, Sterling Ruby, David Smith