Jonathan Feldschuh, “Large Hadron Collider #6” (2007), acrylic and mylar on Plexiglas, 36 x 72 inches (all images courtesy the artist)
Something like magnetic attraction joins certain descriptions to certain artists. Thus “gestural painter” attaches to Jonathan Feldschuh with automatic ease. How else would you label a painter whose images are the swerving, skidding traces of a wide brush wielded with virtuosic vitality? Feldschuh is a gestural painter, no doubt, and yet this readymade phrase is laden with implications that can lead us astray. Not every geometric abstractionist in the years between the World Wars was a utopian, like Piet Mondrian, nor do brushy bursts of energy always put personality on display, as they do in the early paintings of Joan Mitchell. When Feldschuh sends his brush careening over the surface, he is reaching for something beyond himself.
A clue to his subject — or his purpose — lies in a word that appears frequently in the titles of the paintings currently on view in Dynamic Equilibrium at 1GAP Gallery, in Brooklyn.