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gallery exhibition

Mickalene Thomas
Tête de Femme

June 26 – August 8, 2014
540 West 26th Street

MICKALENE THOMAS
Untitled #1, 2014
acrylic, oil paint, glitter, rhinestones, oil pastel, dry pastel, ...

MICKALENE THOMAS
Untitled #2, 2014
enamel, acrylic, oil paint, glitter, rhinestones, oil pastel, dry ...

MICKALENE THOMAS
Untitled #3, 2014
enamel, acrylic, oil paint, glitter, rhinestones, oil pastel, dry ...

MICKALENE THOMAS
Carla, 2014
enamel, acrylic, oil paint, glitter, rhinestones, oil pastel, graphite a...

The New York Times

July 18, 2014

Mickalene Thomas: ‘Tête de Femme’
By: Karen Rosenberg


With their asymmetrical eyes, sequin-adorned cheekbones and swipes of bright lipstick, the subjects of Mickalene Thomas’s new collage-paintings could be Picasso’s “Demoiselles” glammed up for a night at Studio 54.


Although these works make use of screen printing and seem destined to reproduce ad infinitum online (one smaller, square-shaped piece practically screams, “Instagram me!”), the artist has said that they are based on collages of Color-aid paper and other materials.


Armed with that knowledge, you might see this body of work as a back-to-basics moment for Ms. Thomas — one that follows a momentous two years of museum shows and experiments with feature-length film and installation. The emotional heaviness of those recent projects, tributes to the artist’s mother (who died this past year after a long illness), seems to have lifted; playful Cubist compositions, by way of the shrieking palettes of late Warhol, signal a preoccupation with surfaces and formal problems.


But Ms. Thomas has rarely met a formal problem she couldn’t solve, and so these works feel a little too effortless. Her glamazons address fierceness and femininity in generic terms; you hope that she will return, at some point, to the individuality and emotional intelligence of portraiture.