Edward M. Gómez reviews an exhibition of works by Gene Mann at Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York, on view through April 26, 2014.
Gómez writes: "While Mann’s formal language may be largely abstract, her approach to making art is not self-consciously filtered through any canonical styles or theories. If anything, it has been informed over the years by her exposure to and assimilation of European art’s own late-20th-century experiments, in which such artists as Jean Dubuffet, Lucio Fontana, Bram van Velde and Pierre Soulages, among many others, scratched, slashed, burned, punctured and otherwise assaulted or caressed their materials to produce paintings and different kinds of mixed-media works. Raw creative energy is also a hallmark — if not the subject — of much of Mann’s art. So is a sense of spontaneity and an awareness of that drive. Although she is not an outsider artist per se, Mann has developed her art-making techniques primarily on her own and through them has found ways to give expression to the forces that motivate her."