The vibrant colors and domestic setting rich with decorative details in this gorgeous still life by late New York painter Nell Blaine betray her captivation by 19th/20th century European painters like Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard. (On view in midtown at Tibor de Nagy Gallery through Jan 28th).
Using the covers of old encyclopedias, law books and African American reference books, Samuel Levi Jones makes collages on canvas that question what changes as time passes. Jones employs books as symbols of obsolescence to further represent how the ideas expressed therein can also run their course. (At Chelsea’s Galerie Lelong through Jan 28th).
Peter Coolidge’s photos of coal seams in Germany’s industrial Ruhr region glint seductively, appealing to some as abstract compositions formed by nature. Yet not far from the surface is the understanding of coal’s powerful role in pollution and climate change, turning this coalface sinister. (At Peter Blum Gallery on 57th Street through Feb 4th).
Abstract painter Rebecca Morris shows canvases controlled by a grid and, by contrast, images in which forms float freely in a selection of work at Mary Boone Gallery’s 57th Street location. In pieces like this untitled oil on canvas, Morris’ organizational strategy occupies a middle ground as recurring scallop-edged shapes nestle into each other, appearing to both advance towards us and recede. A white border flecked with black recalling ermine fur and a center that brings Dalmatians to mind create associations that drive contemplation. (On view through Feb 25th).
Silhouetted against natural light, the translucent petals of a blossoming flower from the cannonball tree contrast tightly shut pods in the foreground, but each indulges our pleasure in organic forms. Cambodian artist Sopheap Pich’s largest flowering plant sculpture to date sprawls across Tyler Rollins Gallery’s floor in Chelsea, recalling trees planted near Buddhist temples. Though they resemble the sal tree associated with Buddha’s birth, the plants arrived in Southeast Asia from the Americas via Sri Lanka, a reminder of complicated histories. (Through Feb 4th).