Magazine article Artforum International

Ronnie Landfield: Stux + Haller

Magazine article Artforum International

Ronnie Landfield: Stux + Haller

Article excerpt

Ronnie Landfield

STUX + HALLER

Ronnie Landfield was once an enfant terrible: In 1967, at the age of twenty, he was invited to exhibit in the Whitney Annual an eight-foot-square painting called The Howl of Terror, a terrifyingly mystical Abstract Expressionist work. Now sixty-nine, he's mellowed into an elder statesman, yet his paintings, albeit today somewhat tamer, are still poetic, the artist still seeking, as he puts it, to "fill the void that defines who we are"--fill it with glorious color, his forte from the beginning.

Paintings such as Long Way Across and Twilight Rise, both 2015, are "constructions"--Landfield's term--of broad, flat planes of stained canvas, sometimes thin, sometimes thick. The planes are piled atop one another, forming abstract landscapes clearly indebted to Color Field painting. (Indeed, Landfield calls the "initial Color Field painters and Abstract Expressionists" his "fathers and mothers.") Reined in by their rather self-contained, flattened gestures, these works lack a certain haptic appeal of the great Abstract Expressionist canvases--their energy seems dimmed, like an incidental acknowledgment of a more aggressive past.

The exhibition was peculiar: Claiming to be a comprehensive survey of five decades of Landfield's works, it offered only sixteen paintings, eight from 2015, with a scattering of earlier works: two from the 1970s, one from '80, two from the '90s, and the rest from the new millennium. (More historical works appear in the catalogue, but the focus there remains on the new paintings. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.