John Yau reviews Lois Dodd: Day and Night at Alexandre Gallery, New York, on view through April 2, 2016.
Yau writes: "Dodd’s sensitivity to light, atmosphere and color — and the way they complement each other — is understated and precise. This is because she largely eschews the dramatic moments of light favored by the 19th-century American Luminists, avoiding the deep, striking shadows that made the Luminists’ work so theatrical. Look at all the different greens, and their varying densities — punctuated by irregular red and reddish-orange circles (the apples) — that she brings into play in “Apple Tree through Barn Window, September” (2015), and you realize how formally sharp Dodd is in her work. And then consider the raindrops on the glass panes in “Rainy Window” (2014) — and how her tans, browns and grays complement each other and the subject – and you get a sense of Dodd’s mastery. Even when she is working with a circumscribed palette on modestly sized paintings, all less than 20 x 20 inches, as she does in the night views from her Lower East Side apartment window, there is so much she is able to convey through the varying densities of paint, from scumbled and brushy, matter-of-fact surfaces to the mixture of grays defining the sash and casing."