David Hammons at L & M Arts

by Corinna Kirsch on February 17, 2011 · 2 comments Reviews

David Hammons
Venue: L & M Arts45 East 78th Street
AFC’s Rating: 7/10 (Corinna Kirsch)

House painters often set down tarps and drop cloths to protect furniture and floors from stray drips of paint, but David Hammons inverts the situation by draping his painted canvases with plastic sheets, tarps, and fabric. The tarps, poked through with gaping holes, can hardly shield the paintings beneath; instead, they serve to hide, bury, or ignore the canvases, themselves little more than stand-ins for painting as a whole. In one instance, the tarp is missing: instead, a cabinet has been shoved in front of a work, obscuring its generic Abstract Expressionist blues, pinks, and greens. The end of painting is a prime subject for Hammons, though ultimately his attempts to kill it backfire””cloth folds become expressionistic gestures, while the heavy lighting of the gallery gives the works a baroque drama. Despite their status as anti-paintings, the works really are beautiful.

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