Dodie Kazanjian profiles painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye whose exhibition Under-Song For A Cipher will be on view at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, from May 3 – September 3, 2017.
Kazanjian writes: “Most [of Yiadom-Boakye’s paintings] are large-scale, single-figure studies whose faces, set against loosely brushed dark backgrounds, look directly at the viewer. In some, only the whiteness of eyes and teeth pulls them back from near invisibility, but the effort of looking makes them seem all the more real. They have the gravitas and authority of nineteenth-century portraits, shorn of domestic detail—nothing to distract you from the invented yet intensely alive subject. John Currin uses old-master techniques to enrich his contemporary figures. Lynette’s seem to exist outside time.”