Jean Arp FLEUR-MARTEAU. FORMS TERRESTRES 1916 painted wood relief 24.4 x 20 x 3 inches
Alex Ebstein ARID ARRANGEMENT 2015 pvc yoga mats on wood panel 24 x 20 inches
30-year-old Baltimore-based Alex Ebstein ‘paints’ with yoga mats… Downward Dada so to speak. Ebsteinknows her art history, and these works are inspired by Jean Arp.
On the left is a work by Arp - a well known member of the Zurich and Paris Dada* groups. Art history books tell us that Arp rejected traditional painting styles and techniques. He shunned oil on canvas for painted wooden reliefs. He restricted his palette, and inhabited his works with a personal vocabulary of biomorphic shapes.
On the right is a painting by our girl Alex. She also ignores traditional materials – instead picking texturized rubber. This choice restricts her palette to the colors that yogis love. And she delights in riffing on Arp’s compositional vocab. What makes these paintings come into their own is Ebstein’s skill with color and form. They don’t fall down without the history - easily existing as beautiful abstracions.
Alex’s first solo show is opening at Cuevas Tilleard tomorrow! A special wowee-only sneak peek at some of my favorite works in the show here.
*Somewhat surreal art movement. Started around WWI. Loved chaos and chance. Had ideas about anti-art.