S. Ozer reviews paintings by Pat Steir at Dominique Lévy Gallery, London, on view through January 28, 2017.
Ozer writes: "Steir creates these very physical images by pinning an un-stretched canvas on the wall, and while standing on a ladder pushes the paint across the canvas horizontally. The weight of the colors rush down, and either blend with each other when wet or split when dry, allows recessed colors to present themselves. The pours of paint, and their impressive thicknesses draw on a certain sense of the alchemical, as experiments with turpentine and other materials are used to explore the paint itself in its engagement with gravity. At the same time, the brush still functions in a traditional relationship between painter and medium, executing the original gestures to activate these systems of operation. In line with the methods of Agnes Martin, Steir’s work begins with an inclination of the work’s final form, but draws on the act of creation and moments of spontaneity to ultimately finish the work."