Throughout the layout of the current group exhibition at Bridget Donahue, one can’t help but trace the works as a series of pointing arrows. Bright colors and strange, lumpen arrangements seem to trade barbs with each other, while other works create a series of conversations on typography and text, design and craft. In each case, the show seems to tug at a series of half-ideas, as if allowing the show to breathe anew in each moment of encounter.
The show, initially planned as a drawing show, seems to embrace this abortive thesis as a point of entry. Initial prompts turn into meandering lines of thought, incorporating, for example, the thickly laid pastels of Evelyn Reyes posed in close proximity to the dense details of a work by Philip Van Aver, while elsewhere, a series of letters designed by Franz Erhard Walther are posed against works drawing from poster design by Kent Chan. In each situation, each series of works arrayed together, subtle groupings of concept and conception can be found, while still allowing a free-roving experience of the show in general.
Drawing remains a major part of the show, of course, and a rare Martine Syms work definitely serves as a striking cornerstone of the show, but what’s perhaps the more engaging take-away is the dual nature of drawing as both a meandering, aesthetic state and a germinal point of entry for an idea. The show treats the drawing both as something rough hewn and freely moving through space, and equally as the conceptual state of that same notion. Each of these works are a point, a grouping of attempts and tries that seem to swell and shift in their broader meaning as the viewer moves through the show, constructing meaning and finding points of connection throughout. With an express interest in the work as something that discovers itself, the show here seems to rise up out of the numerous tries at completion that dot the walls.
The show closes July 29th.
– D. Creahan
Bridget Donahue [Exhibition Site]