Abstract Critical

Seen In New York, January 2014

February 3, 2014

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In his just shut solo exhibition at Robert Henry Contemporary, painter Mike Childs uses a nuanced approach to the familiar architectonic vocabulary of geometric abstraction – he mixes in cues taken from nature’s architects, with a particular nod to bees and spiders. The results are still quite abstract (no illustrations of Charlotte’s Web here) but these references give the pictorial order a kind of breathing imperfection that I found welcoming. Color and interval are the real keys to these pictures, with large areas of uninflected hue giving way to slightly wonky patterns comprised of different sized modules – they swell right up to the picture plane and quickly recede in quite organic fashion. I liked Left best; the dominant red seemed as though it was casting a glow over all the other colors in the picture – including the greens.

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