In a time when many artists are content to establish one-to-one correspondences between signifier and signified, sign and meaning, Wardell Milan’s ambiguity is refreshing.
Composite bodies constructed from pages of Robert Mapplethorpe’s notorious Black Book, 1986, populate Wardell Milan’s collages, drawings, and paintings. These fractured compositions of physical sensuality and social tension often include shards of images from other sources as well as renderings of lines and shapes glued onto the surface.
Fewer dealers than in recent years chose to unveil new bodies of work. However, Lehmann Maupin mounted new Yosemite landscape photographs by Catherine Opie, paired with the artist’s first forays into forest-themed ceramics. At David Nolan Gallery, Wardell Milan's collages exploring gender identities came fresh from the framer. Nicole Eisenman contributed new drawings inspired by a group of 1950s pre-Pop works by Andy Warhol, both of which were on offer at Anton Kern ($18,000-$26,000 for Eisenman’s; $35,000-$100,000 for Warhol’s).
At David Nolan the artist Wardell Milan reprises his recent breakthrough into panoramic, subtly dystopian paintings of figures in gardens, building on his drawing skill with color, collage and a touches of Cubism.
By Emily McDermott
Photography Frank Sun
From King to Camus...
Isolde Brielmaier Meets Wardell Milan
Art in Review
Landscapes! Romance, Recession and Rottenness at Taxter & Spengemann and Drawings of Harlem at The Studio Museum in Harlem
By Karen Rosenberg
Midnight’s Daydream: Titus Kaphar, Wardell Milan II, Demetrius Oliver
By Frances Richard