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23 Oct 2020

Gideon Bok: Blackstar

Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects

Reviewed by Franklin Einspruch

Gideon Bok paints at astronomically high levels of doubt. Clearly familiar with a deep range of technical options regarding oil paint, he approaches each canvas with a spirit of experimentation that must result in regular disasters. But when they work out, they succeed with the thrill of a somersault on a tightrope.

The recent paintings at Steven Harvey are keyed around a Women's March sign that caught Bok's attention, sporting orange and neon pink that were not previously a part of his palette. This led to investigations of optical mixing, with intense colors going down as a base, thereafter obliging Bok to beat them into submission. Portrait of Ada/Portrait of Helen (2019-2020) records the history of one such effort, as a buzzing atmosphere of cool-on-warm hachure contains Cubist accretions of time, people, and objects in the Maine barn-cum-studio where much of interest seems to be going on in the pandemic-necessitated isolation - does a rock band practice there?

Charlie and Emmett (2019) pictures a dog in the lap of a skeleton, poetically summing up life in the studio.

Exhibition Gideon Bok: Blackstar link
Start date 16 Sep 2020
End date 25 Oct 2020
Presenter Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects link
Venue 208 Forsyth Street, New York City, NY, USA map
Image Gideon Bok, Portrait of Ada/Portrait of Helen, 2019-2020, oil on two canvases, each 53 x 33 inches, courtesy of Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects

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