Dike Blair
Gouaches 1984–2015
April 10–May 9, 2015

39 Great Jones St
New York, NY 10012

Looking at art leads one to calibrate degrees of effort against the power of effect. Everyone does that, consciously or not, whether at work, looking at sport, staring at art, or enjoying vacation. Most everything in life can be gauged in the relationship of effort vs. effect—which is often termed ambition vs. success. Most of life arises from long-established unconscious process—the things that make up our lives. Artists slow down such thinking when making art. Sometimes the effect of talent and presentation is enough (for which Rauschenberg, Elvis, and Warhol were geniuses).

Dike paints highly stylized recognizable contemporary subjects of his choosing, on paper, using gouache, and imbuing them with a cinematic or photographic light—often captured using a flash or artificial light. He sets each one in a white wood frame, which he is very particular about. Such an effort adds to the visual seduction. But that’s only part of the picture. These friendly images are fragments from the daily spectacle in the artist’s life, much of which is like our own.

—From Jeff Rian’s Outtakes Revisited