Astrid Dick, “Paris Bleu” (2021–22), oil on canvas, 80 x 70 inches
I never know when I might see a painting that makes me want to look again, look longer, and think harder about what is in front of me. Recently, I gave a reading at M. David & Co., a Brooklyn gallery run by the artist Michael David. At the reading, each poet stood in front of a large painting made of two different-sized canvases abutted together that hung alone on a recessed wall. Even though someone always seemed to be standing in front of the painting, I was struck by what I saw. After the reading, as people were hanging out, drinking wine, and talking, David introduced me to the artist, Astrid Dick, whose work was included in the two-person exhibition with Erika Ranee Painting Paintings: A Leap of Fate at M. David & Co. (October 28–December 11, 2022). When I talked to Dick about the painting, I learned that a critic had told her that she could not paint stripes because Sean Scully and Frank Stella had already painted them. This struck me as one of those patently foolish statements — like “painting is dead” — that still circulates in the art world.