Elizabeth Riggle: PARTS IS PARTS: STUDIES FOR A VERTEBRAL OPERA , at 101 Galler
January 11 to February 10, 2013
101 Grand Street, between Wythe Avenue and Berry Street,
Brooklyn, 718 302 2242
Surrounded by Elizabeth Riggle’s lithe paintings of vertebrae, constructed with anatomical know-how, it may strike you that the artist’s very name suggests a limber spine. And indeed, in Riggle’s show at Art 101 spinal structure sets the agenda, but painterly wriggle room keeps things flexible. Working in oil in a range of sizes and surfaces, with brushwork splitting the difference between firm modeling and springy graphics, the artist remains faithful to the particularity of bones, each with its ordained role in what she calls the “vertebral opera.” The two most impressive paint-dramas are a small, monochrome vanitas on wood, Dens Attentive, with vertebra standing in for skull; and Overture (For Bob and Ray), a large canvas in which Riggle riffs on boniness with flamboyant erudition, reimagining the sacral, the lumbar, and the cranial as levitating bulges of fresh, buoyant color.
Gallery open Friday through Sunday, 1 to 6 PMprint