Art In Review: Paintings by Jonas WoodMarch 17th 2011, by Roberta Smith, The New York Times
Jonas Woodâ€™s painting continues to mature impressively, gaining pictorial and psychological weight. More than ever his works negotiate an uneasy truce among the abstract, the representational, the photographic and the just plain weird. They achieve this with a dour yet lavish palette, tactile but implacably workmanlike surfaces and a subtly perturbed sense of space in which seemingly flattened planes and shapes undergo shifts in tone and angle that continually declare their constructed, considered, carefully wrought artifice.
A case in point is â€śSun Porchâ€ť and the several browns that denote the spindled back of an armchair at its center, although it takes the eyes a while to notice, given the roomâ€™s crowded topography of furniture, embroidered textiles and, overhead, the beamed ceiling.
Mr. Wood paints the artistâ€™s life that happens to be his own. In its broadest outlines the subject has not changed all that much from, say, Vuillard and Matisse to Alex Katz and David Hockney. In Mr. Woodâ€™s case it includes the hallway leading to his studio, a stack of birdcages stored in a corner somewhere (occasioning a riotous extravagance of parallel lines) and a large cluster of incised ceramic vessels, suffused in a weirdly palpable gray light, by the artist Shio Kusaka, to whom Mr. Wood is married.
The showâ€™s most ambitious work is â€śThe Hypnotist,â€ť which turns out to depict Mr. Wood sitting stoically in the office of a man whose oddly set expression seems to hold the entire, tilting room in check.
Each painting here presents a highly personal but impersonally observed reality that has been astutely cobbled together but is almost too much to take in. It is presented whole, but with all the seams showing for easy disassembly. Thatâ€™s enough to make one of paintingâ€™s most frequent subjects â€” the artistâ€™s life â€” seem new again. Read the entire article hereSource:
Goings on About Town: Art, Jonas WoodMarch 2011, The New Yorker
Painting at its colorful, pattern-happy, and energetic best is on full-throttle display in the young Los Angeles artistâ€™s third show at the gallery. Woodâ€™s tilted pictorial flattening, in oil and acrylic on large canvases, connects the dots from Henri Matisse to Stuart Davis to David Hockney in ostensibly figurative scenes of interiorsâ€”a hypnotistâ€™s office, a childâ€™s bedroom, a sunporchâ€”that play optical games with abstraction. Birdcages and dog crates in storage become a meditation on the modernist grid, as does a shrinelike arrangement of vases. Art and life carry on their zippy conversation in a chockablock installation of smaller-scale gouaches in the back room. Through March 26. Read the entire article hereSource: