Alicia McCarthy's Dense and Weaving Marks @ Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco
Authenticity is the hallmark of a painting made by Alicia McCarthy. Her finished works are detailed weaves, enriched with little smudges and marks embedded in a way that makes you feel like all the energy she had went into that one expression. It’s refreshing, folk art for a time when the digital world is such a dominating force that we are desperate for something real and emotional. In a year that has become both chaotic and alarmingly uncertain, the tenderness of McCarthy's work is nourishing.
This fall, San Francisco’s Berggruen Gallery, presents a new series of paintings by the Oakland-based artist, scheduled through October 10, 2020. Offering a viewing room experience, due to SF’s current limited indoor capacity, we nevertheless have the opportunity to “wander” through the show, taking time to meander through her ramble of off-centered works that pulsate with color and movement But for us, the standout piece is a black and white work, an 8 foot wonder that magnetizes, drawing you in to follow each line and mark, an invitation to navigate McCarthy's fascinating. resourceful thought process. As the gallery notes, "Her intentional use of common material enhances this oscillation between formality and familiarity. Often using found wood, wall space, or office paper as canvas, McCarthy embraces the everyday properties of material to offer a base for her progressively precise compositions...". A beautiful show once again.—Evan Pricco