Essay by Jonathan Goodman
Jonathan Goodman is a contributing critic for Art in America, Art Asia Pacific, Sculpture Magazine, and Art on Paper. He is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Fine Arts at Pratt Institute, teaches at Parsons School of Design, and author of Into the Garden: the contemporary Ink Painting of Deng Guo Yan.
Review of work for The Art Show
Seventh Regiment Armory, Park Avenue New York City
The paintings of Michael DesRosiers are composed of a vivid, even eager fluency; their vibrant abstraction consists of organic forms that turn and twist across the field of the composition. Made with polymer paint, the works are painted on panels that project some five inches off the wall, creating a kind of low relief whose sides possess the visual history of the work as it was made. On seeing DesRosiers’ art, the viewer recognizes that the compositions relate to the history of the New York School, which emphasizes the pleasures of intuitive mind and gestural hand. Here the artist’s paintings feel very much like palimpsests, in which decisions have been made and made again, so that the progress of the painting is recorded as important to the final experience of the canvas itself. In a sense, for all their non-objectivity, these works are deeply personal, given as they are to a freewheeling and emotional treatment of the abstract form.
First and foremost, the viewer senses a powerful energy coursing through the work. In one beautiful piece, an abstraction consisting of organic black lines superimposed on red and silver patterns, the structure of the painting is so vivid as to be initially disarming – the painting seems about to dissolve within the swirling energies that it exposes to its audience. The accomplishment of the painting is that it is both in balance and in motion, moving away and staying put as a structure. In another painting there is a yellow, lattice like structure on the left side, the right a mixture of thin and thick yellow lines and a yellow sphere in the middle. Like much of DesRosiers’ work the painting is a study in contrasts of texture catching the eye as it travels across the extent of the composition. DesRosiers consistently invests his exuberant works with the force of both intuition and will; he communicates strong emotion by presenting shapes that linger in the viewer’s thoughts and by engaging his audience with brilliant color and texture.
Cadmium Reactivation of an Abandon Bordeaux Hive | polymer paint on cradled MDF | 48 x 48 x 4 ¾ inches