Cheim & Read

March 11, 2014, 1:50pm

Pat Steir’s Fluid Reality

There is a notable heaviness present in the galleries of Cheim & Read’s Pat Steir show currently on view in New York. The weightiness is evoked not by any darkness, but by the unique paint application the artist employs in her large-scale canvases, in which she lets gravity dictate the way paint falls, spills, and spatters across the expansive surfaces. Sidestepping any didactic elements in her particular style of feminist practice, Steir instead employs an approach to painting that makes metaphoric references to the leaks, seepages and flows of the female body, seeking to draw out allusions to something that is more random, intuitive, and created by chance circumstances. Rejecting the traditional use of a brush to apply paint, Steir also stands against the myth of the male-artist-as-genius in her choice to abstain from the decisive action of placing paint on surface. Instead, the artist has devised a non-traditional approach, choosing to pour thinned paint from the top of her canvases while they’re vertically mounted on the wall.


Pat Steir installation view, Cheim & Read, New York.

Listed under: Review

March 20, 2013, 8:30am

Letter Press: Al Held Alphabet Paintings at Cheim & Read

Some of the most massive — and massively satisfying visually, despite of and due to their reverberating minimalism — paintings exhibited in the West Chelsea gallery run right now hang in Cheim & Read, in Al Held's seven-part suite of classic Alphabet Paintings. These are a treat: they exemplify Held's 'golden age' geometric abstraction as much as Rene Magritte's The Treachery of Images is tied to Surrealism and Damien Hirst's shark the excessive '90s. But seriously, Held's early hard-edge compositions, spanning 1961-67 and dipping into his deftness with black and white, leave big impressions. — Brian Fee, Austin contributor

Listed under: New York, Review

November 22, 2011, 8:20am

Excavating the figure with Bianca Beck

It is remarkable what a single gestural stroke or gouged marking can do towards turning a murkily colored abstract painting into something uncannily figurative, erotic, mortal even. In a long New York weekend, I knew I had to see Bianca Beck's solo exhibition, the appropriately titled Body, at Rachel Uffner Gallery.

Listed under: New York, Review

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