Sometimes, when reading a piece by an art critic, I get the impression it's less about describing the art and more of a global conspiracy to win at art critic bingo. That's right, if you can use the words "subsume," "metaphysical," "fetishistic," "disaffection" and "melancholic" in one paragraph...bingo. Understandably, it's sometimes difficult to find the words to describe something that is so inherently subjective, and it's easy to run to a thesaurus for help. Richard Patterson's art, for example, leaves me searching for words to describe photo-realistic paintings of toy army men, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, Spice Girls and iconic moments in film. What I want to say is that Patterson plays with notions of how superficiality is now inextricably linked with Western cultural traditions and hero-making, but that would put me squarely on the bingo card, I'm thinking. If I leave out the 50-cent words, it boils down to the fact that Patterson's experiments with irony have earned him a reputation as one of Great Britain's most exciting contemporary artists, making his solo show at the Goss-Michael Foundation, 2500 Cedar Springs Road, a must-see for anyone seeking to add to their art vocabulary. Richard Patterson runs from Friday through April 30. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Mondays by appointment only. Visit gossmichaelfoundation.org.
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Starts: Feb. 20. Continues through April 30, 2009