Secret Pleasures at the Armory Show: Works That Delight and Surprise
Art Business

Secret Pleasures at the Armory Show: Works That Delight and Surprise

Manuel Franquelo’s Things in a Room (Untitled #1), 2013–14, on offer at Michael Hoppen Gallery’s booth. MAXIMILÍANO DURÓN/ARTNEWS Don’t be surprised to be unsurprised at this year’s Armory Show, but you’ll certainly find some unexpected pleasures and revelations, especially on Pier 92. It’s exciting to discover a series of slender 1955 assemblages of Roy Lichtenstein in the booth for Galeria Marc Domènech—you’d have a hard time identifying them as Lichtensteins if not for the labels. As if plucked out of an Abstract Expressionist painting from the artist’s pre-Pop period, the gestural pieces are striking even though not in his signature style. Perhaps this shows the problem of having a signature style: less-recognizable work goes unacknowledged. But these sculptures definitely show the versatility of an artist who had more dimensions than is commonly known. London’s Osborne Samuel gallery presents a warm, soft Tom Wesselman oil on canvas, Smoker Study (for Smoker #14) , from 1973, showing a cigarette-holding woman’s hand with a strangely bent finger that immediately attracts curiosity. Also of note: a lovely gray shadow and red lips through which smoke flows. The painting’s simple-seeming image is curiously hard to read and enticing—such is the charm of a study. […]

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