Editors’ Picks: 11 Things Not to Miss in the Virtual Art World This Week | Ida Kohlmeyer: Cloistered
April 7, 2020 - Katie White for Artnet News
9. “Ida Kohlmeyer: Cloistered” at Berry Campbell Gallery
During her lifetime, the New Orleans painter Ida Kohlmeyer won acclaim in her native Louisiana for her abstract, often jubilantly colored canvases that hovered between gridded arrangements of Rothko-esque fields of color (in fact, she counted the AbEx giant as a friend and mentor) and the mark-making lyricism of Cy Twombly.
A much different and little-known set of her early works can be glimpsed in “Cloistered,” a new online exhibition at Berry Campbell. Made in 1968–69, these paintings almost have the appearance of aerial maps of ancient citadels with concentric bands of geometric shapes surrounding a point of central focus. While showing the influences of Georgia O’Keeffe in places and contemporaries like Kenneth Noland in others, the works also speak to the artist’s fascination with interest in Mesoamerican art (which she voraciously collected) and in cultivating a vocabulary of hieroglyphs, emblems, and ritual meaning, which here collide into a feminine vision of Abstract Expressionism.
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