Fabian Lopez reviews the exhibition Dona Nelson: Phigor at Thomas Erben Gallery, New York, on view through May 17, 2014. Nelson's work is also on view at the 2014 Whitney Biennial (through May 25).
Lopez writes: "Vibrant splashes from one work to another lead us through a maze of freestanding large paintings and finally to the paintings on the wall within the gallery. As some artists seek to maintain the freshness of painting using non-traditional techniques, Nelson continues to reinvent her work while sticking to traditional methods. In the right hands the redundancy of simple techniques and the usage of color will flourish... Fast, slow, patient, neurotic, colorful, muddy, ugly, and beautiful all play an important role in the transition of the new works. It is the work of painting itself that moves and generates an intuitive process where 'play and place' can come together... Nelson’s paintings give us a taste of the old American romanticism with a sense of the current American satire. The exhibition at Thomas Erben brings us to an understanding of the alchemy of painting at its best."