Editorial : Recommendations
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Tucker Nichols
Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles, California
Recommendation by Kristen Osborne-Bartucca

Eric Beltz, “Night Sky, Cheshire Moon,” 2016, graphite on bristol, 10 1/2 x 12 5/8”

Continuing through July 8, 2017

Tucker Nichols’s paintings of vases of flowers are only slight nods to Baroque predecessors — there are no wilting blooms, deep shadows or languorous insects. Instead of a memento mori, his works buzz with ebullience and energy. Though the paintings have a shared subject as well as a commitment to flatness and line, Nichols suggests seemingly endlessly possibilities. Some blooms are more realistic while others are abstract and stylized. Some brushstrokes are milky and ethereal, others are thick and opaque. 


His color palette is jazzy, in the manner of Stuart Davis,’ and evokes the experience of being in a greenhouse: vibrant, hot and breathtaking in its variety. In "Untitled (BR1714)" slim green leaves, coral and red sprays, and gleaming yellow ovoid-shaped flowers rise out of an elegant vase on a plinth, conveying Mediterranean luxury. "Untitled (BR1706)" is a diptych, each panel a funky, Miro-esque grouping of globular flowers and spindly bright pink fronds. The bright green speckled leaves in "Untitled (BR179)" energetically arch across their low vase and gamely balance their spherical flowers/fruits. Nichols takes a quotidian subject and breathes fresh life into it, glorying not only in nature but in the possibilities of painting.

Charlie James Gallery

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