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TEXAS ABSTRACT
at Barry Whistler Gallery through february 28
by Todd Camplin

Last year when a new book came out titled Texas Abstract: Modern / Contemporary by Fresco
Books / SF Design, several artists in Barry Whistler Gallery’s stable were featured, so it made sense
he would host a show of his own contemporary Texas abstract artists. Just like the book, the
works in this group show were strong examples of each particular artist.
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Orr style, the images mess with you eyes. Not to the extreme that an overstimulating Op art piece
might, but definitely memorable. After seeing a great deal of art around Dallas, when I closed my
eyes to go to sleep, Orr’s print on vinyl titled Wayland floated in my mind’s eye.  Leslie Wilkes’
minimalism is clean, crisp with the precision of a hard edge painter. Wilke has made these
geometric, symmetrical painting into monuments of harmonious color and simplicity. I felt
slapped in the face by their straightforward compositions. I can remember years ago when
I had the money, I almost bought a small gouache painting of hers. Now I could slap myself
for having missed that opportunity.

Lorraine Tady’s show in June of last year at Barry Whistler felt in between the space of digital
and analog. Parts of the work looked pristine and perfectly rendered, yet on the same image,
canvas, Octagon Vibration Series Cloud #3, felt birthed for that show, but the tension
between those two opposing ideas was somehow lost. It appears a new conversation is
emerging, but I can’t really tell from one painting, so I think I will hold off on commenting further.
abstraction that I am afraid her work could fall among the noise out there. Though I must say,
imitators don’t really measure up to James’ eye. I could ramble on about John Pomara, but
I finished a review of his show just recently, so I will just refer you there.

Barry Whistler Gallery will have copies of the book available during the exhibition which runs
through February 28th. The book was co-authored by Michael Paglia and Jim Edwards and
features 33 artists from Texas past and present. The gallery showed six artists I mentioned
above: Linnea Glatt, Terrell James, Tom Orr, John Pomara, Lorraine Tady, and Leslie Wilkes.
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