above: Marcia Hafif, Glaze Painting: Phthalocyanine Blue / Green Lake [Laguna Beach] 2002, 2002

Had an unexpected walk-round in the latest exhibit at Larry Becker Contemporary Art on Saturday; a lovely show with currents of summery feeling.
Talked a bit with Heidi Nivling of the gallery about Marcia Hafif's work; and they gave me an article to read, where she is defending Robert Ryman's work, in 1979. Here is an interesting excerpt:

"Ryman's work is not cool, it is contemplative and human. 'Reductionism' isn't right either because that suggests a process of reducing to an inevitable end, while Ryman's work does not do that, but rather uses a limited selection of elements in any given work for the purpose of clarity. And the range of elements he uses is large and expanding. One sees homogeneity, repression, narrow control and a closed system of art only if one is unable to see what is there and concomitantly expects bright colors and confusion, titillation for the bored, and blatant expressions of narcissism - if not political statements - to be the only worthy components of art. Ryman's painting has a great deal to say to the viewer willing to engage it."
Art in America, September 1979.

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