Robin Bruch's stalwart style, which she has been honing to variously obsessive, meditative and energized degrees since the 70s, has a kind of punk sensibility. It has its own ever changing set of rules and it doesn't box itself in. It loves colors and shapes and employes them to deftly spirited effect. It loves paint. Bruch's characters come back and forth in time, making icons of themselves, while also mingling with new members of the team.
In this exhibition, Bruch presents a more nuanced range of recent work. The show comprises a series of tondos, a suite of very small square paintings and two medium scaled works. These three types of work coexist in a surprisingly interconnected universe. Some things that happen: several iterations of wavy or accordion like bands; cubes and triangles; a triangle in almost every painting; old compositions appearing in a new pose or a different outfit; beguiling color combinations.
In one work, two irregular multi-colored cubes meet each other in the middle of the painting, and then expand or contract into the outer edges of its square frame. A deep blood like purple pervades the remaining space. Within these cubes, which are attached at the hip, is an undulating wavy multicolored band, which bisects them. All of this unfolds in a brushy, chalky/matte surface, materializing an awkwardly exuberant, yet brooding field.
In one tondo, two trapezoids grind over a field of green, the same wavy band dancing across their midriff. And this happens again in another, but the band has now morphed into a concertina. Her shapes are saturated with pigment like a coloring book, and their outlines are often left visible, lending them an electrified aura. Sometimes, it is almost as if they rest on a backlit screen.
There is something to be said about the casual, non-fussy appearance of the works. The brushstrokes showing, or not. This part more solid... etc, but we know that this virtuosity is not easily won. Perhaps the pleasure of Bruch's work is in its economy, and the dignity that she gives to that economy. When a painting is good, it is good. Maybe she is even more confident now. Maybe she has let loose. Or, perhaps the world of her painting has just gotten that much more into the groove of things after all these years.
576 Morgan Avenue, Apt. 3L
Brooklyn, NY 11222
Between Driggs and Nassau
L Train to Graham
G train to Nassau