Saturday, June 4, 2011

UPDATED John Eisler, Maya Hayuk, Jen Stark & Freegums Reviews in Today's National Post

UPDATE June 9 - Reader, I realized my description of Hayuk's work in Toronto in my reviews is inaccurate. Read on here for my apology post.

Today is the last day to catch John Eisler at Diaz Contemporary. I review the show in today's National Post, along with a few other fun abstract-art shows: Maya Hayuk and Jen Stark at Show and Tell and Freegums at Narwhal. An excerpt:

3. John Eisler at Diaz Contemporary
100 Niagara St., to June 4
Local John Eisler puts a more cerebral spin on abstract-art tendencies [than Hayuk, Stark and Freegums]. His massive, glossy wall sculptures, constructed of layers of low-fi materials such as corrugated plastic, metal shelf supports and hardware-store chains, amp classic tensions between flat image and deep space, resolution and dissolution. While being generally enjoyable to look at, these wall works also remind me of something of-the-moment in Canadian art: Their play with symmetry and almost-figuration makes me think of Luis Jacob’s They Sleep with One Eye Open (shown this winter at MOCCA and soon to be installed, we keep being told, in the Dufferin Underpass). And frankly, it’s hard for me to see gold-coloured chains in a work these days and not think of Montrealer-cum-New-Yorker David Altmejd, who’s also used them to famous effect. Perhaps because it comes across as more original, the highlight of the show for me is a series of much smaller folded-paper works in Diaz’s back gallery. Though each is subtitled “model for future weapon” (threatening, no?) these whimsical structures strike me as a string of unusual kites — something for the imagination to sail away on, whether the weather is fine or cloudy.

You can read on at the Post for more. FYI I made reference in to the AGO's Ab Ex show in my lede, but didn't intend it to be the headline! Like I say in the review, these works do not fall under the same art-historical rubric.

(Image of John Eisler's "model for future weapon" installation via Diaz Contemporary)

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