James Walsh: The Elemental
January 7, 2020 - Franklin Einspruch for Artblog.net
This Thursday evening in New York City, “James Walsh: The Elemental” will open at Berry Campbell. I will be there, and I hope you will be as well. I wrote a 2,000-word essay for the brochure, titled “James Walsh Is The Whole Band,” which I'll put in my writing archive on Friday to avoid any spoilers. Check back at this post for the link. Here's a wee excerpt in the meantime:
Lacking Jim's visual acumen and relentless making, abstraction itself offers no clue as to why one would execute any particular pour or smear or scrape at any given point on the rectangle. Too, composition of this much complexity is a gargantuan challenge. Consider Natural (2019), which contains a frosted sweep on the lower half with a coil of candy red poking through, stains of blue, pink, and green on the right, troubled mashes of various colors across the top, and a fat lip of white in the middle. Yet in aggregate, those four regions cooperate as distinct units, and the result is pleasingly simple. It looks like the product of outsize visual genius, and it also looks like there's nothing to it.
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