Photograph: Courtesy WallspaceScott Olson at Wallspace, through May 4Like many young painters today, Olson plows the fertile soil of Early Modern abstraction for his small and moderately scaled canvases, which echo the work of Synchronist artists such as Morgan Russell and Stanton MacDonald-Wright. This resemblance, however, is merely a conveyance for Olson’s true obsession, which involves building up and sanding down successive layers of oil paint, wax and marble dust to achieve a surface effect that is both colorful and restrained.
Photograph: Courtesy Paula Cooper GalleryWayne Gonzales at Paula Cooper Gallery (543 W 26th St), through Apr 27Photo-based paintings of parking lots crowded with cars are the featured items in the artist’s first solo show in New York since 2009.
Photograph: Courtesy Andrea Rosen GalleryElliott Hundley at Andrea Rosen Gallery (525 W. 24th St), through Apr 27The work of this L.A. painter swings for the fences with vivid, energetic skeins of pigment piled onto thick surfaces of collaged materials. It’s restless stuff, suggesting Roberto Matta or maybe Motherwell filtered through the affichistes. There is plenty of peekaboo action throughout, with cutout figures and hints of recognizable imagery appearing or disappearing within the more generalized compositional scrum.
Photograph: Courtesy PostmastersDavid Diao, “TMI” at Postmasters, through Apr 27The final show at Postmasters’ Chelsea location features a 22-year survey of work by this veteran painter, who’s been part of the gallery’s stable since it opened in 1985 on the East Village gallery scene. Diao’s compositions, which mix graphics and Minimalism and sometimes venture into elegant abstraction, often wryly and ruefully comment on the vicissitudes of art history, as well as the artist’s own struggle of trying to find his place in it.
Photograph: Courtesy Pace Gallery“Adrian Ghenie: New Paintings” at Pace Gallery (534 W 25th St), through May 4Traces of Anselm Kiefer and Francis Bacon can be found in the work of Romanian painter Adrian Ghenie, whose combinations of abstract flourishes with historically sourced figurative elements are suffused with dark undercurrents of political violence.
Photograph: Courtesy Paul Kasmin GalleryKenny Scharf, “Kolors” at Paul Kasmin Gallery (515 W 27th St), through May 4Chroma is key in these latest paintings by the graffiti-pop funkmeister, who offers a rainbow riot of canvases, created with his patented blending of Hanna-Barbera and Salvador Dalí.
Photograph: Courtesy Eleven RivingtonVolker Hueller at Eleven Rivington, through Apr 27The German artist’s stylistic brew of Expressionism, Surrealism and Cubism is given a large, stiff dash of 21st-century anxiety in his lastest tshow, which includes paintings as part of the offerings.
Photograph: Courtesy Sperone WestwaterNabil Nahas at Sperone Westwater, through May 4Nahas, who was born in Beirut and received an M.F.A. in painting from Yale, ranges over several styles in his canvases—from dense abstractions, featuring overlapping biomorphic forms and looping outlines that suggest the efflorescence of organisms under a microscope, to stolid representations of ancient cedar and olive trees in his ancestral homeland. These disparate works are united by Nahas’s emphasis on tactility and color.