Continuing through March 24, 2012
“Energy Fields, Life as a Painter” is nothing if not a playful reminder of the basic constructs at work in painterly compositions. Oli Sihvonen relied heavily on color relationships and geometric forms to convey a sense of movement, of depth, and shadow. His devotion to Color Field painting was expertly realized in seemingly endless combinations. A small painting, simply titled “4 x 4,” is a perfect square separated into vertical and horizontal bands that belie Sihvonen’s intricate use of structure. The colors appear to affect one another the way near-transparent materials shift in tone when placed over each other.
While “4 x 4” seems to possess a steady back and forth movement, carrying the eye up then down, left then right, many other paintings are alive with kinetic energy. While essentially remaining abstractions, a few, like “Ladder,” broach the territory of representation while remaining consistent and true with respect to Sihvonen’s larger body of work.