Ryan Ford, “Yellow room, Stuck Between Life and Eternity,” oil on canvas, 60×70,” 2010
18 July 2010
By David St.-Lascaux
One of the advantages of being an omnivore is exiting the ivy-clad and camouflaged Morgan Avenue L stop at midnight and walking past the NYPD cruiser down around the corner to the tinted-glass-invisibly-occupied-boy-racer and helpful-giggling-jeune-fille-pair-pedestrian industrial zone of Johnson Street. If you think I’m kidding, you’re right. Ars longa, vita brevis, dice roll… let’s.
Actually, it was arriving there that made it worth it, to visit the shared ateliers of a group of young Brooklyn-based artists, who offered a feast of work, and whose enthusiasm was electric. The artists: Charles Antoine, Rachel Eisley, Ryan Ford, Julia Helen Murray, Sindy Sitran, and Russ Underlab, who let it all hang out. Here’s the shorthand lowdown:
Antoine: Figure paintings overlaid with color washes, and heavy wood-glass-and-metal-littoral-detritus in museum-scale Cornell/Schwitters collage.
Eisley: Photographer and Russianiast (see her work at www.rachel-eisley.com).
Ford: A samurai film buff who creates miniatures that combine elements of de Chirico with naked, pink genital-less ETs, American cemetery (cherub heads with wings) and international folk art (such as Frané Lessac’s Dragon of Redonda). The subject matter of Ford’s large-scale compositions includes pugilist mythological oriental demons, an occidental superhero and bas-relief abbatoir entrails.
Murray: A highly abstract light-and-metal hanging installation, mediæval lanterns and a mezuzah-like miniature.
Sitran: Rorschach, not-quite symmetrical, crazy-quilt fabric collages begging much larger scale.
Underlab: Flopping penises on paper plates (one sold), a DayGlo-paint-on-black-space-curving 3-D torso titled “Genesis 76” (ça plane pour moi). Underlab’s influences include the legendary Brion Gysin, Keith Haring and Caroll Dunham.
The reviewer, with an impending diurnal commitment, missed the post-party diner-on-Lorimer repast: je regrette, looking forward to seeing these diverse, germinating talents in galleries soon.
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