Marjorie Welish on Leslie Roberts at Minus Space

Leslie Roberts
Leslie Roberts, Your Photographs Must Be, 2015, acrylic, gouache, graphite, ink, colored pencil, on gessoed panel, 14 x 11 inches.

Contributed by really inspires a good body of art. is a scavenger of found lexicons—code-able idioms in daily use on commonplace themes. From such source data she transcribes letters into colored graphic marks, then charts these across and down a grid.

Leslie Roberts
Leslie Roberts, FYEO, 2016, acrylic, gouache, graphite, ink, colored pencil, on gessoed panel, 16 x 20 inches

At Minus Space we now see the work: that is, the method as a whole coexisting with the singular brilliantly colorful result, in small panels requiring reading as well as seeing.  In Case Of begins with this lexicon: accident, allergic reaction, avalanche; C to A and B registers phrases by way of a commuter’s world: wet paint, alien nation, call ticket master, etc.; FYEO culls anagrams we take for granted. It is a pleasure to report that here is no pedantry: rather, all is a refreshing take on a ‘Seventies procedural formalism indifferent to taste.

Leslie Roberts
Leslie Roberts, In Case Of, 2016, acrylic, gouache, graphite, ink, colored pencil, on gessoed panel, 16 x 12 inches.
Leslie Roberts
Leslie Roberts at Minus Space, installation view.

Minus Space, DUMBO, Brooklyn, NY. Through October 29, 2016.

About the author: Painter and art critic has received many grants and fellowships, including the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts, The Fifth Floor Foundation, Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, Pollock-Krasner Foundation, and Trust for Mutual Understanding (supporting an exchange between the International Studio Program, New York and the Artists’ Museum, Łódź, Poland). In November, she has a solo show opening at in Bushwick.

Related posts:
Marjorie Welish and James Siena: Doing and undoing
Paul D’Agostino’s pictorial discursiveness

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1 thought on “Marjorie Welish on Leslie Roberts at Minus Space”

  1. One of best Exhibitions reviewed/posted on Two Coats of Paint. Marjorie Welish’s
    brief, straightforward notes on Works by Leslie Roberts at Minus Space; with excellent photography of exemplary works and mounted Exhibition appropriate to this Show and mission of Minus Space. About Ms Roberts abstract-color-system constructed works, semiotic bits/icon fragment based, Welish uses terms “..vernacular mythopoesis..”. She mentions correctly “..work as method..”; which may be fundamental to aesthetic of Minus Space ‘process-orientated’ Shows.
    Images show entire Works with bright colors, including small notes/drawings at bottom of each, detailing systems. Expository conclusion “..refreshing take..seventies procedural formalism indifferent to taste.” Fine, perceptually demanding, Exhibit – equally fine review/notes.

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