Robert Bordo “Back Flip”

The National Exemplar

poster for Robert Bordo “Back Flip”

This event has ended.

Nature, roads, and signs, rendered predominately in thick, dark oil paint, imply oblique narratives about ecology, the current social political landscape, and autobiography.

Untitled, 1988, the earliest painting, a detail from a map dominated by the bright blue ocean between continents, suggests a more optimistic time, and a consistent and sustained interest in place, the world, and the state of the world. Subject matter in later works, the Hudson Valley, where Bordo, a native Canadian, has spent the last 18 years painting and living with his longtime partner and now husband, Donald Mouton, a former dancer, and the drive to New York City, where he continues to teach painting at Cooper Union, becomes specific to the point of abstraction. Back Flip, 2013, the back of a road sign mounted on top of a pile of dirt, seen from a passing car; and Marked Man and Slings and Arrows, 2017, which read simultaneously as tagged trees condemned to be cut down, and as highway lane markers, refer back to mapping, a missed exit, finding one’s way, loss and regeneration, and questions of pictorial space and flatness.

Some of the paintings on view, Wacko, 2012, a rear view mirror, twilight zone; The Strange Meeting, 2012, an ominous hilltop, its black mass and surrounding dark sky both studded with orange flares, have been brought back to be seen again—for they resonant with the anxiety and uncertainty of the moment. At the same time, the immediacy of the paint handling, and lusciousness of the surfaces, suggests pleasure, a sense of security, and way forward through working consistently with paint over time.

Robert Bordo has been an Associate Professor of Painting at Cooper Union since 1996. He has exhibited his work since the late 1980s, at Brooke Alexander, and Alexander and Bonin in New York; Galerie René Blouin, Montreal; Mummery + Schnelle, London, Rubicon Gallery, Dublin; and most recently in the 2016 edition of PS1’s Greater New York; and at Bortolami Gallery. He was awarded a Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship in 2007, and the Robert de Niro Sr. Painting Prize in 2014. Robert Bordo has designed several sets for the Mark Morris Dance Group including the recent 2017 revival of Dido and Aeneas at Brooklyn Academy of Music.

Katie Rashid, April 2017



from April 30, 2017 to June 03, 2017


Robert Bordo

  • Facebook


    All content on this site is © their respective owner(s).
    New York Art Beat (2008) - About - Contact - Privacy - Terms of Use