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    Drawing Notebook
by N. F. Karlins
 
     
 
Yayoi Kusama
Infinity Nets (TX2)
2000
at Barbara Gladstone
 
Rosemarie Trockel
Untitled
2000
at Barbara Gladstone
 
Nayland Blake
Untitled
2000
at Barbara Gladstone
 
Miroslaw Balka
Untitled
2000
at Barbara Gladstone
 
Geraldine Lau
Chamber IV
1998
at Catherine Moore
 
Gilbert Flores
In the Presence of Being
2000
at Catherine Moore
 
Milton Avery
Profile
1959
at Forum Gallery
 
Barbara Gladstone Gallery's current show, "00," is a bracing survey of more than 100 works on paper, a great way to grasp the expressive powers of drawing at the moment.

With so many pieces, your eyes will ricochet, finding lots of new relationships. For instance, you can enjoy four of Yayoi Kusama's brightly colored net drawings and recognize her cheery obsessiveness again in Sol LeWitt's much larger gouache, Parallel Curves.

Many of the usual suspects are here, often is excellent form. Ilya Kabakov's triptych of interiors beautifully conjures up a life haunted by metaphoric crows. Francesco Clemente's pastel self-portrait is one of his better ones.

Anish Kapoor's black radiant mass pushing at the edges of the paper against a crimson background makes me crave a show devoted solely to the drawings of this remarkable sculptor. And speaking of artists known primarily as sculptors, Richard Serra's Torqued Ellipse Mylar I with its splatters of paintstick is just hypnotic, a fascinating mixture of markings related to his monumental steel ellipses.

Other standouts with an edge are Rosemarie Trockel's head in the midst of some visionary experience, Alexis Rockman's creepy ecology The Evaporated World, and Nayland Blake's charcoal of a bunny head with holes.

There are the usual ups and downs, of course. Miroslaw Balka's imaginatively suggestive portraits of two tongues made from pinholes and pencil makes Raymond Pettibon's array of small drawings look even more puerile than usual.

Whether your taste tends toward abstraction or representation, you'll find plenty of old faves, like Elizabeth Murray and Peter Saul, and up-and-comers, like Michelle Segre and Peter Doig. Why not join the party?

The show is up through August at Barbara Gladstone Gallery, 515 West 24th Street.

*      *      *
Another place to find tomorrow's draughtspeople today is Catherine Moore's "Summer Paper" show, up through July 30. The exhibition features works that are very reasonably priced -- nothing is more than $1,000. Among the almost 30 pieces on view are an abstract in silverpoint and acrylic on video paper by Susan Schwalb ($300), Geraldine Lau's gouache Chamber IV ($500), and Melissa Richard's H. Cherry Panorama ($350), a richly colored abstract oil-on-paper by this painter, and Gilbert Flores's In the Presence of Being ($400).

Flores's drawing is built up of swirls of black enamel paint on tracing paper. Globs of enamel dry into tiny areas of sensual ridges upping textural interest. If you miss the July show, you can catch his work and Richard's in August.

From Aug. 2-Sept. 9, Moore presents "Melissa Richard: Summer Vacation" and "Gilbert Flores: Enamel Drawings." The gallery is located at 140 West 30th Street on the third floor.

*      *      *
For drawings from the past to the present, move uptown to the Forum Gallery. "Drawings by 20th Century & Contemporary Masters" spans the century from Abraham Walkowitz's charcoal Citiscape from 1914 ($18,000) to Jane Lund's fine pastel Portrait of My Mother's Hands from this year ($28,000).

The emphasis is on representation of various kinds -- from a lovely Matisse pencil line drawing of Henriette Darricarrière from 1926 ($165,000) to one of Robert Cottingham's new series of typewriters and cameras in graphite, Premo, from 1999 ($6,000).

Picasso, Picabia, and Milton Avery -- in a self-portrait in ball-point ($8,500) that recalls Matisse in technique if not elegance -- rub shoulders with gallery regulars, like William Beckman and Steve Assael. It's a potpourri that's well worth the trip.

The show is on view through Sept. 1 at Forum Gallery, 745 Fifth Avenue at 57th Street.


N.F. KARLINS is a New York writer and art historian.

 
 
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