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Anxious Men

I’m Afraid Of Americans: Farley Aguilar’s “Bad Color Book” At Lyles & King

by Emily Colucci on January 18, 2017
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Sometimes it takes the right sociopolitical moment for an artist’s work to land its critique. That’s precisely what happened with Farley Aguilar’s paintings, currently on view in his solo show Bad Color Book at Lyles & King.

A couple years ago when I saw his work at Volta New York, I wrote off the Florida-based artist’s monumental splattered canvases as a throwback to the hypermasculine, “bigger is better” style of painting. But, his current exhibition, filled with threatening representations of crowds, resonates with the populist anger and frenzied mob mentality tapped into by Donald Trump. While Aguilar sourced his painting’s imagery from vintage photographs, his themes, rendered with an anxious, frenetic hand, are chillingly timely.

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High Anxiety and Escapism at Rashid Johnson’s “Fly Away”

by Emily Colucci on September 12, 2016
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Sometimes an exhibition articulates our current sociopolitical state so precisely that the advancement of the artist’s work barely matters. Nowhere is this more apparent than in Rashid Johnson’s recently opened solo exhibition Fly Away at Hauser & Wirth.

Fly Away comes at just the right moment with the ever-growing list of names of victims of police violence, reports of mass shootings and ongoing election news. Titled for the frequently covered hymn “I’ll Fly Away,” the show reflects anxiety and fantasy for escape in an era where these feelings seem not only relatable, but unavoidable. It’s so timely it’s haunting.

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