Now should be a good time for Payano. His art is breaking ground: He has perfected what he calls his “heavy collages,” three-dimensional paintings that hang on the wall but also jut out with sculptural components like plaster-cast hands, cast peaches that have mouths and lips, fabric, synthetic leaves and more, to form fanciful portraits of imagined characters. 14 April, 2023
Curvilinear symmetries and an Easter-egg palette (albeit one with a twist) lend this Los Angeles painter’s new canvases a delphic allure. Stockman’s compositions are both diagrammatic and vaporous, a combination that calls to mind the spiritualist abstractions of the American modernist Agnes Pelton. 11 November, 2022
The layered allusions in Stockman’s process come as little surprise: she ranks among the intellectual artists of her day, with an undergraduate degree from Harvard (in addition to an MFA in studio art from NYU). She also studied Buddhist thangka techniques in Mongolia and Rajput miniature painting in India. Ultimately, it’s coloration that fuels her. 11 October, 2022
The Dominican-American artist Kenny Rivero is showing his newest work at a solo exhibition at Charles Moffett in Tribeca. Born in Washington Heights and now based in the Bronx, Rivero creates with painting, collage, drawing, and sculpture to engage with his Dominican identity and family history, as well as using his background as a trained musician to inform his creative process. 15 September, 2022
Rivero doesn’t define himself as a painter. Art is one among many interests, and for a long time he pursued other callings. He applied to a high school specifically for its drama program, first went to college for music and art and then graduated from New York’s School of Visual Arts with a degree in fine art, eventually earning his M.F.A. from Yale. He played in several bands, and had stints as a porter and doorman before entering grad school. 07 September, 2022
As I get older, I think more about growing up. My childhood included some of the happiest times of my life, so I reflect on those and put them onto the canvas — and I think that people who grew up around that same time, in the 1970s and ’80s, can appreciate it 28 August, 2022
If “Monsoon Season” represents Strait’s entrée into the New York art scene, it is undeniably a strong, successful one. Strait’s style is fresh, and her talent is unwavering. Above all, the issues she addresses and her navigation of the world as a woman are increasingly crucial as we see our rights challenged and stripped away. 20 July, 2022
Institutions have taken an interest in Jo’s energetic, at times frenetic canvases—the ICA Miami was one of those hasty and savvy buyers to snap up a work during the first hour of NADA. The attention could be dizzying, considering how green she is: this was Jo’s debut with Moffett, and her first solo show in London at Ronchini Gallery just closed last week. 09 May, 2022
A presentation of wild, frenetic, color-saturated paintings by Julia Jo at Charles Moffet (the full series of which sold out within the first hour of the fair) 06 May, 2022
Two paintings hanging on a wall in the foreground and one painting hanging in the background. The paintings are by New York-based artist Sam Bornstein.
If Sam Bornstein’s dreamy and soft-spoken paintings have a subject, it’s the mystery of proximate unknowability in a city like New York. “Variety Lofts,” which inaugurates Charles Moffett’s new space in Tribeca, nods to the city’s architecture and artistic history. The title, inspired by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, evokes a sense of life in close vicinity: a student’s loft above a working artist’s studio above a late-night pizza shop, all while a window-cleaner hangs outside. 14 April, 2022
Five artists standing in a studio with artwork and dogs
Lily Stockman is an abstract painter whose work has the cerebral mysticism of the Tibetan thangka paintings that she discovered in Mongolia and also perhaps the simplicity of the Shaker embroidery samplers that her artist grandmother passed down—“someone’s ecstatic experience translated into something that’s given to someone.” 12 March, 2022
Pier 36, the venue for NADA New York 2022, Courtesy NADA
Several galleries participating in the main section will stage solo presentations of artists, including Joe Minter at March (of New York), Julia Jo at Charles Moffett (New York), Elif Saydam at Franz Kaka (Toronto), and Elliot Reed at anonymous gallery (New York and Mexico City). 03 March, 2022
Whether painted or sculptural, the work of Afro-Caribbean American artist Miguel Angel Payano Jr popped off the walls of New York-based gallery Charles Moffett‘s booth. Payano Jr has lived and worked in Beijing for nearly 20 years. His surrealist work delves into the formation of identity when living between and across cultures. 06 December, 2021
The quietness outside, the ability to be a voyeur, how funny and shameless and alive the city is, and will probably always be, even without you in it. Ellis gets what’s so special about it all; she is the first, and perhaps last, great New York City pandemic painter. 27 October, 2021
Through distorted recollection rather than photo reference, Ellis’ voyeuristic paintings capture everyday scenes throughout the city. From a couple dining outdoors in subzero temperatures to an apartment building façade punctuated by a man watching porn on a huge TV with his window open, Maggie Ellis captures the feeling of living in New York City and never really knowing what strange things you may encounter. 27 October, 2021
Charles Moffett took the solo route too, staging an excellent New York–homecoming of Kenny Rivero’s recent exhibition at the Brattleboro Museum, transposed mostly wholesale: fantastical drawings and collages made on things retrieved from the trash of the luxury Gramercy Park building where he worked as a doorman, a neat parallel for this whole thing. 15 September, 2021
Installation view of Kenny Rivero's work at The Armory Show, New York. The booth contains framed works on paper with two works positioned on a plinth and a wooden vitrine, which is shaped like a table, in the center of the back wall.
A reprise of Kenny Rivero’s recent show at the Brattleboro Museum, this collection of drawings on found paper by the 40-year-old Washington Heights-born artist is an art fair in itself. Naïveté and sophistication, innocence and insight change places in the work so quickly that you feel as if you’re standing on quicksand. All you can do is follow the advice of the red-eyed zombie Superman in one piece and 'dream your dreamy dreams.' 09 September, 2021
Alec Egan sitting in his Los Angeles studio with paintings in the background featuring his signature floral patterned wallpaper.
Good poetry is about using the economy of language to expose the true nature of something no matter how big or small. This is what I hope to do through the language of painting—looking at the little things and the economy of how they are composed in relation to one another and hopefully exposing something nuanced about their identity or that of their owner’s identity. 06 September, 2021
Careful study of these landscapes, both through the act of painting and their countless hours on the road, led to an incontrovertible understanding of their sense of place. Nearly all that unspoiled scenery is now gone, overtaken by Florida’s breakneck overdevelopment. 10 August, 2021
The Highwaymen tapped into a heady vision of American landscape and décor, fantasy aesthetics born of the postwar abundance they were largely denied during the Jim Crow era. The eleven paintings on view at the Charles Moffett gallery represent just a sliver of the artists’ prodigious (and often anonymous and undated) output. 03 August, 2021
The quickness of the strokes are immediate — many of the compositions shade toward abstraction, slowing down just enough to allow for a windswept palm. 29 July, 2021
Brazenly formulaic but fringed with fantasy, these paintings parade a wonderfully unprecious attitude about living with, and making one’s living from, art. 27 July, 2021
Often, letting the eye linger reveals Hinton himself, reflected in a mirror or a window. For example, in Schoolhouse Bath (2020), after your eyes move past the gorgeous pink and yellow shower curtain, the black and white tiled floor, the flourishing potted plants, the strangely placed cabinet, the light fixture, the autumn outside the window, they arrive at the artist himself, reflected in a mirror hanging on the wall, his easel with the painting of the bathroom before him. 23 June, 2021
I’m most interested in the breaking points of structures. This can be capitalism or patriarchy or religion or beauty—structures can be interpreted in so many ways, but what intrigues me most is the moment those biases lose traction; the moment we realize we’re behaving in line with someone else’s ideas and making judgments and projections based on something more like propaganda than empiricism and understanding. 14 May, 2021
For her first U.S. solo show, London artist Gianna Dispenza presents four separate bodies of work, including her “Bathers” paintings, which invert the trope of the woman caught unaware at the water’s edge by a voyeuristic male artist. These canvases are inspired not by sexual desire but by the Dispenza’s discovery of a women-only swimming pool that she quickly embraced as a safe space—one that made her realize how much that feeling was missing in her everyday life. 03 May, 2021
The works seek to reimagine mid-century geometric abstraction and embody the monochromatic painting tradition, taking advantage of the style’s exploration of color. 13 April, 2021
The works on view feature drawings on paper that Rivero intercepted from the trash, mostly while working as a doorman for eight years in a luxury, prewar residential building in New York City. 19 March, 2021
The show’s poetic title—at once searching, declarative, and ambivalent—is fitting for an artist who wrestles with questions of race, time, identity, and the universe. “Colors take on meaning,” Gumby says. “It’s psychological warfare, reinforced from pop culture to fine art. As a person of color and as an abstract painter, this was a conversation I wanted to be part of. 18 March, 2021
Kenny Rivero paints the monsters under the bed. The sort that make you have to dream extra hard, just to distract you enough to forget their snoring. And his paintings feel like attempts to recreate these dreams, monsters and all. They often include references to pop culture and New York streets, but through the distorted, unfamiliar appearance they make in dreams—references not to the material, but our memory of them. 17 March, 2021
I like art that has a delayed read to it. Let me explain that. I see a painting that I like and there’s something in the work that holds my attention longer than 30 seconds or two minutes. I’m drawn to works that were given a lot of attention to details. The devil is in the details. It’s in the color composition or orientation of the work or the clever use of contrasting materials that look or feel very seamless. 25 February, 2021
During a year when death has loomed larger than usual, Kenny Rivero’s compact but exquisite presentation at Charles Moffett accomplished the rare feat of reckoning with mortality in a manner that was both moving and cathartically humorous. Honing in specifically on the ever-present threats faced by communities of color, I Still Hoop nodded to the ladders, liminal spaces, and magical elements of a specifically Caribbean diasporic mundane in a manner that resonated precisely. 30 December, 2020
Rivero is a trained musician and his time in the studio alternates between visual artmaking and music. In addition to art supplies, his 400-square-foot Bronx studio is packed with a drum set, keyboards, guitars, and various percussion instruments. When he paints, he feels that his hand moves in a system that is more connected to music than to painting in a traditional sense. 11 December, 2020
The pieces are simultaneously resonant and playful around an aesthetic throughline that makes this relative newcomer stand out. Lamps and Socks, for instance, riffs on the stereotype, Rivero explains, that Dominicans don’t like to wear socks, depicting them sneaking out in the gauzy, pre-dawn light of a New York streetscape. 03 December, 2020
When Kenny Rivero began his new series of paintings currently on view at Charles Moffett Gallery he knew that death, and its rituals, would be their unifying theme. He could not have known how this year would bring the realities of death—particularly in Black and brown communities—so painfully into focus. 23 November, 2020
A small but mighty exhibition of recent paintings, I Still Hoop offers a slice of Rivero’s attempts to grapple with and face the ever-present specter of death. Poetic and at times humorous, Rivero’s paintings — all made in 2020 — nod to science fiction, elements of his Afro-Caribbean upbringing, and reflect on increased rates of mortality for Black and brown people in a way that never feels heavy-handed. 02 November, 2020
Space, in general, is so adeptly captured in Rivero’s work. Dimensions crash into each other on the canvasses. Entire neighborhoods are encompassed in abstract two-dimension. Pink Windows (2020), shows a flat night landscape filled with fireworks, cars, music, the warmth of a church window lit against the dark, that somehow, within its layers, transmits a feeling of wholeness. 28 October, 2020
Those who know Stockman’s work will find familiar shapes of the unfamiliar variety: the arch and its variant that looks like a coffee bean or beetle; the outline of a mushy brain; something like a slit; another that lies somewhere between a quill and a lightning bolt. In Stockman’s hands, geometry becomes somehow heavenly, organic. 16 October, 2020
The new paintings read less as transom-topped portals to spatial elsewheres than as presentations of things, however abstract, in the here and now. These primarily symmetrical compositions build up in layers of rectilinear ground in peachy pinks, sandy browns, and pale yellows of varying density and tone, with brush marks visible particularly at the ends of strokes. 07 October, 2020
I felt like I turbocharged my practice by not being able to paint for three-plus months,” Stockman says. “When I finally got back into the studio, I had all of these drawings and all these ideas and all of these color relationships I was interested in exploring. 08 September, 2020
I paint flat on sawhorses or a big work table in thin layers, diluting my oil paint down with medium to the consistency of watercolor sometimes, so the paint has to dry flat so it stays put and doesn’t drip. I might use a T-square to locate the central point of the bigger ones, but the small ones I just eyeball, and start working very freely in the underpainting, and slowly bring the outlines and shapes into a cleaner line in each successive layer. Once you see them in person you realize the lines and shapes are a little wobbly and off; it’s important you can see my hand in the work. No tape. 04 September, 2020
Drawing from the compositions of Fra Angelico’s fifteenth century frescoes, ninth century tradition of Indian miniature painting and the language of twentieth century American abstract painters, Stockman creates paintings that reference nature and give hints to plants, birds and places. The colorful voluptuous forms, which seem to float in space, were influenced by her time spent in Mongolia as an apprentice in Buddhist thangka painting and a year spent in Jaipur studying Indian miniature painting. 31 August, 2020
I paint like a printmaker; all that time block printing and breaking down a composition by rekh and datta, the fine lines that outline and define a shape, and the interior filler, helped me be a more patient, color-shape painter. I paint flat on sawhorses and build up layers by color, shifting opacity and transparency so you get all these very subtle shifts as you move around the painting and the light changes. 28 August, 2020
The work, titled Sparrow with Shadows (2020), depicts a city sidewalk, desolate save for a hunched man, the titular sparrow, and a face mask–clad woman walking down the street." 28 May, 2020
Seven photographs included in the exhibition, also shot on film, share the contemplative mood. A picture of a discarded beer bottle lying in an amber hayfield evokes Dora Maar’s classic Surrealist photograph of a miniature junk sailing ship in a sea of rippled hair. A photo of a man at a diner is a carefully structured mélange of color and pattern, with a townscape refracted through a window and sprinkled, redemptively, with a confetti of light. 02 October, 2019
This young painter having his first NYC solo show presents dreamy figurative paintings rendered in a variety of techniques that include scraping, pouring, screen-printing, stenciling and sanding. The subjects here, sometimes titled by occupations (electrician, telemarketer), are seen caught between labor and leisure, reality and reverie. 17 December, 2018
When an artist bares an element of doubt in their work, they open a portal to the act of making. This productive doubt characterizes the art of Sam Bornstein, who, like Pierre Bonnard or Amy Sillman, is invested in searching and revision. 29 November, 2018
While “Alleviators” is purposefully imbued with humor. It is a self-referential humor that is tinged with isolation. Rivera explained that he only realized later that all the works feature just one or two figures. While the simultaneous presence of humor and isolation may feel somewhat paradoxical, it is quite in keeping with the work that inspired the show’s title. 09 August, 2018
When planning the first show, Moffett called Lily Stockman, an artist based in Los Angeles and Joshua Tree who paints lush abstractions that are steeped in her study of Buddhist Thangka painting and Indian miniature painting. Moffett has known the artist for the better part of the decade, and said that the timing was right for her to have another solo show, as it had been two years since there was an exhibition of new work, at Gavlak in Los Angeles. He told her to get work together for a new solo show—even though he didn’t have a space yet. 16 July, 2018
For its inaugural exhibition, Charles Moffett Gallery presents a series of colorful abstract paintings by Los Angeles artist Lily Stockman. 01 May, 2018