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13 Feb 2020

Carl E. Hazlewood: Drawings and Collages

June Kelly Gallery

Reviewed by Piri Halasz

Carl Hazlewood has been protean almost since he came to the U.S. from his native Guyana. Besides making drawings, collages, and wall pieces like those in this show, he’s a writer, curator, teacher, and co-founder of Aljira, a Center for Contemporary Art.

Of particular interest is BlackPac Eats Modernism (2016). BlackPAC is a political action committee mobilizing African American voters. The collage shows a black pie shape with a big mouth and tiny eye taking a bite out of a sail-shaped group of multicolored cut papers. This group must be "modernism," being eaten by African Americans, but does "eat" mean that African Americans are destroying modernism, or absorbing it?

As a modernist critic, I tend to call what I like "modernism." Some artists of African descent make fine modernist abstractions. Others don't. I say this collage refers to those who do, and implies that without them, modernism would be in trouble.

This show is abstract and modernist more than anything else. The two big wall pieces didn't quite do it for me, but the rest of the show is clear, concise, and elegant.

Exhibition Carl E. Hazlewood: Drawings and Collages
Start date 17 Jan 2020
End date 03 Mar 2020
Presenter June Kelly Gallery link
Venue 166 Mercer Street, New York City, NY, USA map
Image Carl E. Hazlewood, BlackPac Eats Modernism, 2016, cut papers, graphite, pastel, mesh on archival paper, 20 x 16 inches, courtesy of June Kelly Gallery

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