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Masterpiece Theater: Curated by Geoffrey Young

Morgan Lehman Gallery
535 West 22nd Street, 6th floor, 212-268-6699
May 31 - June 30, 2012
Reception: Thursday, May 31, 6 - 8 PM
Web Site

Morgan Lehman Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition opening May 31st, 2012, featuring new paintings and drawings by three of New York’s best kept secrets: Kirsten Deirup, Zohar Lazar, and Nichole van Beek.

If theatrical is the question, masterpiece is the answer. Modesty in art is over-rated, as anyone with a Schnabel complex knows, so be prepared for the challenge of ascertaining the significance of what these artists have been cooking up over the past four months. Yes, each can draw, paint, and employ color to bold effect, but that’s of secondary importance (the least we can expect of an artist). What drives these artists is Imagination. Another word for imagination is risk, another word for risk is danger, another word for danger is aesthetics. And aesthetics, as we know, is for the birds. But these artists aint tweeting.

If Zohar’s characters are be-scarfed and repulsive, blasted and drunk; if Kirsten’s landscapes are fractured with crystalline planes, and foul at the horizon; if Nichole’s blanket-backgrounds grind against her faux-origami blocks . . . . uh, well, let’s begin again. Check out the way toxic violence becomes hilarious tour de force in Mr. Lazar’s work. Don’t miss the chromatic care with which Ms. Deirup’s tragic heroes share space with traditional perspective. Feel the momentum in the improvisatory fecundity of Ms. van Beek’s methodology. . . etc. Be happy you’re here, in other words, with good eye-sight, strong legs, a titanium-sheathed stomach, and time on your hands. Pick your favorite work. Pretend it’s yours. What will you do with it? Where will you put it? How will you explain it to your family when they visit? Do you really care what they think?

That art is best which exemplifies skills, explodes narrative, collapses time, manipulates history, puts on the dog, stomps graves, takes a while to see, heads judgment off at the pass, questions resolution, hurls garbage at invaders, and celebrates the sheer pleasure of making as if it were a God-given rite.

Dear citizen. We hope you enjoy the show, for whatever reason. And if you’re a writer, we hope you engage with the pith and verve of it all, in your own language.
Have photos of this show? Tag them with artcat17361 to see them here.