Ethereal and buoyant, or sensual and physical: the two tendencies are seemingly at odds. All four attributes are inherent in these selected works by Andrea Belag, Emily Berger, Rick Briggs, Denise Gale, Elizabeth Gilfilen, Zachary Keeting, Victor Kord, Paul Pagk and Susan Wanklyn. I became curious about the high-wire acts of these artists when some of my own gesture-based abstractions became unmoored from the edges of the canvas. These painters make the physicality of their marks the prime subject while liberating their forms to float freely. All of their work is animated by a love of gesture, and the use of negative space to set it off. As such, they all share a certain graphic quality but never yield completely to flatness; evidence of the hand is always present. Belag, Keeting, Berger, Wanklyn and Pagk use negative space to invite a conversation between their structures. Briggs, Kord, Gale and Gilfilen allow a single form to take center stage, no matter the degree of complexity. These painters create images that stick to the mind’s eye, almost like an after-image, ephemeral but solid.
—Anne Russinof, 2014