Excerpt by Marco Tagliaferro on ArtForum – read the entire article here This impressive exhibition revolves around a group of paintings and drawings installed in close proximity, encouraging a linear read of Patrick Angus’s work. Sunday Stroll, 1978, a watercolor on paper, depicts a dazzlingly sunny California seaside populated by young people. A study for this work—a drawing in pencil on paper—hangs alongside the painting. While the theme of homosexual culture is typically present in Angus’s oeuvre, it is equally true that it can be interpreted through the lens of an extremely polished sense of irony, one explicated through means other than content. For example, in the aforementioned painting, the depicted subjects seem to fully embody a complexity; their androgyny defies descriptive stereotypes.
Angus, an American artist who died in May 1992, at the age of thirty-nine, understood the complex citational system that characterized the return to painting at the height of the postmodernist era as a unique and unrepeatable possibility for working with historical stratifications and formal polysemy, without ever resorting to citation as an end unto itself. This is evident in two oil paintings on canvas, both untitled and from 1976. One presents an austere woman, her hands clasped, and the other shows a figure, with a scornful look on his or her face (again, the character seems androgynous). In both works, one can discern an Expressionist Picasso reinterpreted by David Hockney, but also reverberations of the Austrian painter Anton Kolig.
-Marco Tagliaferro for ArtForum