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Syd Solomon & Larry Poons: Ecstatically Chromatic

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Charles A. Riley II reviews Syd Solomon: Swingscape, Paintings from the 1970s at Berry Campbell Gallery (through May 23) and Larry Poons: New Paintings at Danese/Corey, New York (through May 29).

Riley writes: "The great critic and curator Robert Pincus Witten once observed that 'Poons instrumentalizes chance (the very hallmark of Abstract Expressionist painting).' The value of that felicitous expression is particularly suited to [the painting] Book of Minutes, which changes course both gesturally and chromatically innumerable times on the way from edge to edge." Riley notes that "[a]lthough acrylics have been around since the 1940s … Solomon has a claim to being one of the earliest adapters for his type of expressionist surface. He certainly is one of the technical innovators when it comes to aerosol spraying—viewers will see blooms of fine mist in several of the works in the show. The technique for applying these blooms, which he called 'dropping paint in layers from above,' was part of the legacy of his camouflage work in the military."

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