Borderline: Depictions of Skin

Works by Gwen Hardie, each oil on tondo, 30 inch diameter, Photo by Susan Alzner
263 Bowery. 212.228.8457
Opens: 03/28/13, Closes: 04/27/13

In the second exhibition at this recently opened venue a block north of the New Museum, three women take skin as their subject in ways that exploit the dermatological possibilities of their elected mediums. Cynthia Lin works graphite and charcoal on paper to a photorealist intensity that marries the pixilation of early Chuck Close to the cropping of John Coplans. Diana Schmertz encases tiny digital reproductions of her paintings of flesh in one-inch acrylic spheres adhered in an grid around the walls of the gallery’s basement. And Gwen Hardie, in feats of slow-read trompe l’œil, renders unfamiliar, initially inscrutable, magnified corners of the body enhancing an uneasy mix of the familiar and the other through a fleshly marbling technique and in destabilizing tondo format. Freud spoke of the skin ego; the three deep skin analysts on view here each in her own way leaves us wondering whether there might be such a thing as skin vision too. DAVID COHEN
On view through April 27. Works by Gwen Hardie, each oil on tondo, 30 inch diameter. Photo by Susan Alzner