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OOFAH! This is good

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Ray Yoshida
Originally uploaded by sokref1.

Ray Yoshida’s OOFAH!, 2002, (det) collage on paper. Delights cut from the funny papers into glyph-like shapes, the big work (48″ x 72″) is an inscrutable message from beyond. Click to see it bigger.

Up since March, Rock Paper Scissors at Fleisher-Ollman Gallery goes down April 29 and if you’re looking for the “ohmygod” show this weekend (in addition to the new ICA shows featuring Zoe Strauss and the Spector show (featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright and Adam Wallacavage) which I predict will also fit into this exclamatory category — run by and get an eyeful of James Castle‘s string-stitched abstractions, Ray Yoshida‘s spot-on funny and beautiful paper glyphs (see top image), Ray Johnson with a piece that prefigures Raymond Pettibon, and great work by the new kids in the stable, Anthony Campuzano, Jina Valentine, Thomas Vance, and Isaac Resnikoff.

Ray Johnson, Untitled Caveman with Daffodil, 1982. It’s the drawing but also the words that are Pettibon-like.

There’s amazing works in the exhibition (other notable artists are Bruce Pollock, Ruth Thorne Thomsen, Joseph Cornell, Terry Allen, Philadelphia Wireman, Felipe Jesus Consalvos, Paul Laster, Marcy Hermansader, Purvis Young, Otesia Harper, Anne Ryan and Jess!). And if your idea of great collage is Hanna Hoch whose works I’d seen in the Comic Grotesque show at the Neue Museum last year — and they were great– paper collages on paper –this show stretches the definition of collage into the wild blue yonder.

Here you’ll find sculpture that’s pieced together, drawings pieced together from multiple sheets of paper, a stitched fabric collage and two puzzle pieces glued together into 3-D constructions. It’s great! And it made me realize the potential that collage with 3-D options offered–call it a cousin of assemblage art but not so precious and self-conscious. These works are by turns amusing, hallucinatory, brute and just plain beautiful.

Thomas Vance’s Tumble

If you loved Thomas Vance‘s piece at Arcadia, there are three more such works here and each one is a delight of cosmic cardboard engineering. James Castle is of course exquisitely forlorn and, here, amazingly conceptual so it would seem.

Luis Romero’s Untitled

Luis Romero is a new discovery to me and his works are wild and great: They look like Aztec-runic designs made with build ups of obsessive ink patterns on layers of paper glued together to make topographical-looking channels and streams.

Anthony Campuzano’s Portrait of St. Germain

Anthony Campuzano
has a new word-work that’s a sad tale about a man with no direction, no shadow, who appeared maybe and disappeared it seems and nobody knows if he left a trace or not. Portrait of St. Germain is weird and wonderful and filled with Campuzano’s usual pitch-perfect lettering and existential questionings.

Isaac Resnikoff’s The Border

Isaac Resnikoff
‘s piece The Border is forlorn. The stitched together clothes-evoking fabrics in red white and blue are a human fence. The batting inside is peeking through here and there and and the whole made me think of clothes hanging on poles in backyards and quilts coming undone and many other sadnesses in which people are kept apart who want to be together.

Jina Valentine’s Le Sange Froid

Jina Valentine
‘s piece is a photo (I believe or maybe it’s a drawing, a little hard to tell) over which is a layer of tracing paper with drawn designs and cut designs of a lacey delicacy. The piece, called “le sange froid” is veiled and mysterious.

In sum, it’s another wonderful show at this gallery and a bringing together of older artists with young ones that works for all involved.

There’s more pix on flickr.