Michael Berryhill's tabletops

Michael Berryhill, Conceiving The Design, 2011 | Oil on linen on panel, 16 x 16 inches. Courtesy Horton Gallery, New York.

Michael Berryhill, a painter who still values a good struggle in his work, has several fine, small-scale paintings in Monkey Wrench, a group show at Horton Gallery, through July 22. Heavily worked and overpainted (in a good way), the paintings depict tabletop objects in the studio, some of which are identifiable, and others which aren't. Although painters are going through a period in which contingency and ennui are hot, I predict that struggle and tenacity may be right around the corner.  

Sharon L. Butler (via Two Coats of Paint)

Michael Berryhill, Palette, 2011 | Oil on linen, 24 x 18 inches. Courtesy Horton Gallery, New York.


Michael Berryhill, Pop Up, 2011, oil on linen, 11.75 x 9.25 inches. Courtesy Horton Gallery, New York.


Michael Berryhill, Stache Rack, 2011 | Oil on canvas, 18 x 14 inches. Courtesy Horton Gallery, New York.


Michael Berryhill, The View Through You, 2011 | Oil on linen, 16 x 12 inches. Courtesy Horton Gallery, New York.

In a New York Times review of his 2009 solo show Karen Rosenberg wrote that Berryhill's paintings were uneven. "Some are worked to within an inch of their lives, while others look as if they were plucked half-formed from the studio." In 2011, the inclusion of both types of work might have a different interpretation. Perhaps part of Berryhill's process has always involved questioning the struggle to resolve his canvases.



Monkey Wrench: Michael Berryhill, Stacy Fisher, Hilary Harnischfeger, Sally Ross, Kate Steciw, and Wallace Whitney
 at Horton Gallery, New York, NY. Through July 22, 2011.

Sharon L. Butler is a writer and critic and is the blogger behind Two Coats of Paint

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