Richard Pousette-Dart was most recognized as a important member of the New York School of painting and also the youngest member of first generation of abstract expressionists. Before the 1940’s, his paintings and drawings were marked by thick black contour lines and primitive themes, such as figures. The Drawing Center exhibition is the first in-depth consideration of Pousette-Dart’s drawings from 1930’s. During this period, the artist made sculptures and did drawings and paintings also. These drawings explore a lot of his concerns about sculpture, line, shape and form. These simple elements, along with vivid colors are prominent in these works. Some may say they enjoy the pure visual pleasure, some may say the drawings look like a mix of Picasso and Matisse, some may feel the work is somehow linguistic and find it extremely boring.
"Agony" is a drawing made with graphite, ink on paper, it is about 18 by 15 inches. A twisted solid figure form is in the center of the work; the shapes are full and sharp. The deep red background is powerful, with a heavy emotion also expressed by the figure.
"Untitled" (Figue-495) is a drawing made with India ink and gouache on paper. It is about 17 by 14 inches. It is a weird drawing; The figure is in a distorted dancing pose. The pose looks unnatural and the proportion of the body is untrue.
There are also small brass sculptures on display. They are hand-cut, pendant-like and mostly about 5 to 8 inches. The artist noted that he based his designs on forms in nature and organic symbols that people variously seem to attach. These little sculptures are functionless but adorable. I wish I can see theses sculptures as paper-weights.