Chip Hughes & Anna Rosen:
Gounki Loom
March 8 - April 20, 2019

Kerry Schuss Gallery presents "Gounki Loom", an exhibition of recent paintings by Chip Hughes and Anna Rosen. Both artists employ gridded structures as foundations for inventive play with organic imagery and personal poetics. The exhibition’s title is telling. Gounki is a complicated version of checkers played on an eight by eight checkerboard. "Loom" refers to the machine for weaving as well as the idea of looming as a state of impending presence.

In Hughes's luminous, intensely colorful oil paintings, trellis-like grids are entwined by vines, leaves and flowers. Some pictures consist of gridded planes that might have been sampled from architectural facades. Rendered with a meticulous yet sensuous touch, Hughes's works are optically fascinating and romantically evocative. In another timeline he might have been a Medieval manuscript illuminator.

Made with ink and watercolor on large sheets of paper, Rosen's works involve cartoon images of flowers and voluptuous female nudes drawn with vigorous immediacy and embedded within or layered over brusquely painted rectilinear patterns. Unlike Hughes' paintings, which project a subtly trippy air of Matissean equanimity, Rosen's pictures evince a fierce, comedic urge to break free of the grid and, implicitly, to escape or defeat the Cartesian matrix of modern life. Perhaps a utopia looms on the horizon of Rosen's antic vision.

Chip Hughes, "Seedling Needling", 2019, oil on fabric, 20 x 16 in.
Anna Rosen, "Fruited", 2019, ink and watercolor on paper, 33.5 x 44 in.