Quirky Scenes and Forms, Ena Swansea
David Cohen, Art Critical, reviewed Ena Swansea's exhibition at Friedman Benda.
Working from photography and imagination, as well as remembered perception, Swansea brings sheer delight at the potential of expressive marks and manipulated materials to depict actual if quirky scenes and forms. Her mode is especially well suited to realms of darkness and artifice—this can be lights shining at night on stumps in the Hudson or banks of snow in Central Park, works which most closely recall Katz as well as fellow Katzians Robert Berlind and Peter Doig, such as It’s Morning Already? (2014), shown in a black-walled interior gallery. But her painterly subterfuges (brushy silken strokes atop layers of liquid graphite) seem especially suited to internal nocturnes – nightlife, crowded bars and cabarets and more louche entertainments. It is as if her sleights of brushstroke, in turn brazen and furtive, gravitate instinctually towards libido and inebriation. More
|Ena Swansea, It's Morning Already?, 2014, Oil on graphite on canvas, 2014. |
Courtesy of Friedman Benda. Photo Christopher Burke Studio