Sunday, September 21, 2008

Joanna Pousette-Dart at Moti Hasson

Joanna Pousette-Dart Sep. 9 - Nov. 1, 2008. at Moti Hasson
I was out on the nice post-apocalypse Saturday with another painter and as we were working our way back towards 23rd street to catch the 6 train we made "one last stop" and went in to see Joanna Pousette-Dart's exhibition exhibition. After a long day in Chelsea, we were tired and a little burned out. It turned out to be a fine way to end the afternoon.

Joanna Pousette-Dart's paintings, abstract shaped canvases hark back to another era, at the same time they appeared fresh and new. Calm. The paintings have an uncanny feeling of 'rightness' about them. The color, the shapes, the line are resolved with a relaxed acuity, nothing feels forced yet there is an internal tension present which keeps the eye in fluid motion. It is a rare achievement.

Joanna Pousette-Dart - Installation View

Joanna Pousette-Dart - Untitled (Cañones #4)
acrylic on canvas over panel - 69.5 x 106 inches | 2007-2008

Joanna Pousette-Dart - Untitled (Cañones #3)
acrylic on canvas over panel - 79 x 92 inches | 2007-2008

Joanna Pousette-Dart - Untitled (Cañones #6)
acrylic on canvas over panel - 34.5 x 37 inches | 2007-2008


Donna Dodson said...

Nice work! It reminds me of Northwest Coast Native American art- esp the masks and totem poles that were carved from cedar and polychromed but these canvases also remind me of automobiles and automotive paint. Very crisp + clean!

George said...

donna, you're right, I had the same association. Totem Poles Google
I also got a bit of a 50's era design or color feeling.
Like I said, it had been a long day and both my friend, who is nor particularily disposed to this kind of work, and I both thought her show had something that 'stuck' with us after leaving.

Donna Dodson said...

Do they come off as totems, talismans or mandalas though in the gallery? Re: 50's design color do they feel like almond, avocado and pumpkin kitchen appliances? I can see that in them too. BTW did you see Liza Lou is opening this week at L&M arts and has an upcoming installation at Lever House? Can't wait to see her new work.

George said...

Do they come off as totems, talismans or mandalas though in the gallery? Re: 50's design color ...

No. In both cases it's just a loose association I made after the fact. Some of the shapes have a referential similarity with the Tlingit forms, as well as some design licks from the 50's. The 50's color styles tend towards being slightly desaturated and shifted slightly away from the pure spectral colors which reappear in the 60's.

I'll check out Liza Lou's work.

Jon said...

Thanks for the pointer to this show - I missed this, but will definitely go back and check it out.

Did you see the Susan Dory or Peggy Bates openings tonight? They remind me of Joanna's work a little.

George said...


I missed their openings but here's the information for other readers, including jpegs of the recent works.
Susan Dory's exhibition opened at Winston W├Ąchter Fine Art 530 W 25th Street, NYC.
Peggy Bates' exhibition is at 532 Gallery Thomas Jaeckel 532 W 25th Street, NYC.

Aside from being abstract, I don't really see much connection between the works by Ms. Dory or Ms. Bates with the paintings of Joanna Pousette-Dart. I haven't seen their exhibitions yet so this isn't a quality judgment, just an observation. I appreciate the heads up on the shows and will try to take them in the next time I'm in Chelsea.

Jon said...

I went to see Joana's show - you're right, there isn't so much of a connection.

What had interested me about both Susan Dory and Peggy Bates's work was the way that their paint seems almost like poured rubber or silicone, the plasticity of the paint creates depth, and really draws attention to time. I found the effect quite dramatic. From looking at the images in your post I had assumed that Joanna was using a similar technique, but seeing the work in person I realize she relies much more on brushwork, the surface is actually quite smooth.

What I liked most in Joanna's work was the subtle changes in color that occurred in the thin lines when they transitioned from one broad area of the painting to the next - the tension between paint thickness and translucency.

George said...

Hi jon,

We're even, I managed to see both the Bates and Dory exhibitions Saturday. I'll post pictures in a bit.

I also saw the Joanna Pousette-Dart show for a second time and it held up on second viewing which I always consider to be a good test.

By contrast, the Cecily Brown exhibition of paintings at Gagosian was disappointing both times I saw it. I believe she is a good painter but the works I saw, and there were a lot of them, did not transcend the gobs of paint used in their execution.

ec said...


post got eaten so here's abbreviated version:

Agree Cecily Brown was empty as hell

Agree Joanna Pousette Dart was a delight, a great show

Want to see Lisa Sanditz at CRG and Tomma Abst at Zwirner

Also on another topic:
Poster Boy makes art, I was wrong--and not because the NYFA feature--I questioned the work in reaction to epater le bourgoise as the measure--silly.

George said...

I debated writing something on Cecily Brown's exhibition, then I ended up writing a lot of market related and political comments on my other venues, and let it pass.

I believe that Cecily is a gifted painter but that she's a bit lost at the moment.

I just put up something on McCrackens exhibition at Zwirner. It's down now, I had intended to write something earlier but became sidetracked.

Coming up, MOMA. I paid $75 to join MOMA so I could see the Miro exhibition without a crowd. It's an eye opener, not to mention Van Gogh, he's pretty good and Kirchner, so's he (Closes Nov 10)
All in all It was the best time I've had at MOMA in a couple of years.