Hilary Harkness shares with Sade not just the pathology to which the Marquis lent his name but also an essential element of style — endless variation, at once exhilerating and enervating, upon an obsessive theme.
Neo Rauch is a prodigious talent. His canvases are lush with painterly dexterity, compelling characterization, and compositional intrigue. But, as with Walton Ford’s animal portraits, there is more about these costume dramas that transports viewers back to the amalgamated past they never knew — the very definition of nostalgia — than truly puts them in touch with a sense of being here and now.
The waterfalls promise to be impressive and quite the sensation, but they will also reveal Eliasson’s main strength – the skill to turn a generous gesture into a subjective experience, which even in a city of millions can be as personal as it will be communal.
Even an astute connoisseur would be hard pressed to locate specific Nozkowskian tropes. There are some recurring motifs, but internal scale, texture, and mood present themselves in different coordinates. This is the more remarkable because Mr. Nozkowski’s modus operandi is so prescribed in terms of scale, medium, taste, and authentic touch.
The experience in this richly diverse exhibition is not of transition so much as consolidation: the new works, whether big loopy abstractions in fat confident brushstrokes or weirdo figuration, seem legitimate outgrowths of the precious, tight, miniaturist Siena of old.
Regardless of the medium he works in, Johns’s busy, agile yet weirdly reticent hand presents an oxymoronic mix of attributes, being at once tentative and emphatic.
The effect of scale, however, is to demand an attention the unglamorous, prosaic images might not otherwise command, to make moral, political claims for the importance of their subjects — in the senses both of the socially marginalized people and the issues raised.
In Luc Tuymans, you are never allowed to forget that the source is banal and secondary. Painterliness underscores alienation rather than ameliorating it.
Despite different approaches towards scale, texture and color, a common attitude pervades each artist’s style that isolates a cool tension between involvedness and restraint.