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Three to see: New York

From social media and social change to a new look at an Abstract Expressionist

by The Art Newspaper  |  2 February 2017
Three to see: New York
Lois Dodd, Cows and Clouds (1961). (© Lois Dodd, courtesy Alexandre Gallery, New York)
With no context, you might wonder what Alexandre Gallery’s concurrent solo exhibitions Lois Dodd: Early Paintings and Sally Hazelet Drummond: Selected Paintings (until 25 February) are doing together. Both artists belonged to the Tanager Gallery (Dodd was a founding member) and both are included in the current exhibition Inventing Downtown: Artist-Run Galleries in New York City, 1952-65 at New York University’s Grey Art Gallery (until 1 April). Enjoy losing yourself in the hypnotic colour fields of five of Drummond’s pointillist monochrome canvases or delight in the clever lines of Dodd’s works, which sometimes depict cows.

Those outraged by recent events can take a break from marching and head to the International Center for Photography for the exhibition Perpetual Revolution: the Image and Social Change (until 7 May), which looks at how social media is a catalyst for change. The show includes still and moving images split into themes like #BlackLivesMatter, climate change, terrorist propaganda and the right-wing fringe. Striking images include Rachel Schragis’s massive, 12-foot-long mixed media collage Confronting the Climate: A Flowchart of the People’s Climate March (2014) and Sheila Pree Bright’s 8-minute, two-screen video #1960Now: Art + Intersection (2015), which features footage from protests after the killings of Michael Brown and Freddie Gray.

Theodoros Stamos is among the most poorly-known of the first generation of Abstract Expressionist painters, which is a situation that the exhibition Theodoros Stamos: Contemplations on the Universal (until 4 March) at Hollis Taggart Galleries aims to remedy. The show includes around 35 works and covers the 40-year period between the late 1940s and the late 1980s. In the latter half of his career, Stamos began spending extensive time in Greece. Some works, like the painting Olympia Sun-Box (1967), channel ancestral myths. The show especially focuses on biomorphic pictures from 1949 and colour field paintings from the late 1970s. It is accompanied by a catalogue with an essay by the art historian Jeffrey Grove.

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