optical juju


I used to underestimate the optical juju in the paintings of Mark Grotjahn (pronounced Groat-john). When he first showed in New York, about five years ago, I privately dismissed the art of this Los Angeles-based painter as alluring but repetitious, overly simple, and too op. Now I think he may be painting a sort of unstable parallax vision where space oscillates and perspective is disrupted. Whatever he’s doing, I suddenly can’t see enough of his work. The Whitney Museum’s current lobby show, organized by associate curator Shamim Momin, of eight large drawings by Grotjahn–though it may feature too many monochromes and it’s a real shame there are no paintings on hand–proves that even though this artist is repetitious, his work is far from simple. It is more than alluring, even a little insurrectionary in its implications.

more from The Village Voice here.