3RD JULY 2014
The summer shows an increasing trend for group shows in New York’s galleries, and it becomes a chance to check out a larger number of artists active in the city’s art scene. Group shows can also be “funnier”, as the orchestration of different artistic voices leaves more space to curatorial creativity.
Last week C24 Gallery inaugurated Yell-O, an exhibition featuring works by J. Mikal Davis, Nick Gentry, Adele Mills and Ekaterina Panikanova. The common ground sustaining the juxtaposition of these four artists was offered by a similar approach to the material. All of them underwent a reinterpretation of the medium and, while it obviously produced different outcomes, they were all able to communicate a strong aesthetic sense and an innovative vision. In the specific, Nick Gentry presented a series of paintings realized over an assemblage of floppy disks. The subjects here were portraits of anonymous people: realistic, intense and sensual, they showed an intimacy that was in contrast with the impersonality of the floppy disks over which they were painted.
The work of Ekaterina Panikanova was even more intimate. Her paintings were realized over assemblages of open books mounted on wood. Because we usually picture books as if they were open in our hands and only for us to read, seeing them wide open, basically “naked”, and then painted over almost felt like a violation. In juxtaposition with the nudity of the objects, the painted figures were cryptic. The body of a horse without head or legs standing over a little girl, headless as well, and embraced by a stranger’s arm.
Yell-O is a compelling, interesting and fun show that you really don’t want to miss!