Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017

Featured item from THE LIST: Doron Langberg at 1969

The breakout paintings of Doron Langberg from around five years ago collided intimism and raunch to potent effect. Their slow-read romantic symbolism hovered between coyness and luxuriance as if the brush could’t quite believe the homoerotic explicitness it was being enlisted to depict. The latest paintings from this still-young Israeli-born, UPenn and Yale graduate, on view through the end of this week at 1969 (Quang Bao’s new gallery on the Lower East Side), tone down the sex but if anything ramp up the psychology, trading one kind of penetration for another. The sitters in these portraits are close friends, fellow artists and family members. The range of handling is quite dazzling, whether in materials, composition, degrees of verisimilitude and resolution, or emotions—sitters’ or artist’s. Julia and Snake, (pictured here) which shows Julia Bland at work, uses the fiber artist’s materials to orchestrate complex dissonances between readymade and discovered abstraction, stylized and actual flatness, volume and shadow. Mark on the Beach, the most hedonistic image in this group, is an essay in shifting foci in which the artist’s subjective responses– indifference, devotion, affection, lust – to different aspects or zones within the scene are somehow as palpable and convincing as the neutral, democratic alloverness of an objective approach would be. It is as if he were a camera with feelings. DAVID COHEN

on view through Sunday, February 26 at 103 Allen Street. See THE LIST for full details