ANDREI PETROV reviewed in the Washington Post

22 Apr

In the Galleries: ‘Syria: Sacred Spaces. Ancient Prayers,’ ‘Sedition of Sound,’ ‘Pure’

By Mark JenkinsPublished: April 18

 

Andrei Petrov, Redemption Song, 48"x30", oil on canvas

Andrei Petrov, Redemption Song, 48″x30″, oil on canvas

 

Andrei Petrov

Like the mid-20th-century abstract expressionists, Andrei Petrov attempts a pictorial equivalent of music. But where the usual preference was jazz, Petrov’s “Sedition of Sound” was inspired by Delta blues and 1960s protest songs. The New York painter writes that his show, at Morton Fine Art, reflects “the shifting moods and sentiments captured in those recordings.”

The colors and textures in Petrov’s paintings shift, although usually over a steady visual beat. Typically, his pictures emphasize a vertical pattern, something like a wood’s grain. Over that matrix, the artist adds splatters, rough circles, contrapuntal gestures and areas that simulate tears in the canvas. These may represent another of Petrov’s themes, “the distortion, incompleteness and rare moments of clarity in the shadows of memory.”

The artist employs both addition and subtraction. He builds up layers of oil paint over pencil and charcoal drawings, and ink and acrylic washes, yet later rubs and scrapes pigment from the surface. Most of his pictures feature a wide array of hot hues, often in gushes or glimmers than suggest lava or sunlight. Some of the show’s most striking compositions are more limited in color, whether to black, white or gray or the blue, white and orange of the vast “Theoretical Geography.” Whatever it represents, subtraction serves Petrov well.

Sedition of Sound: New Paintings by Andrei Petrov On view through April 22 at Morton Fine Art, 1781 Florida Ave. NW; 202-628-2787; www.mortonfineart.com.

Andrei Petrov, Piece of My Heart, 24"x47", oil on canvas

Andrei Petrov, Piece of My Heart, 24″x47″, oil on canvas

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