Art News, 1956

"Four Painters" [Poindexter; to Apr. 21]

All draw enthusiasm and maturity of outlook from current, more-or-less abstract American styles. Talent, in the New York ambiance, seems to be released quickly; who knows whether this is good or bad? Nora Speyer, originally of Pittsburgh, was seen a few months ago in a Museum of Modern Art "New Talent" exhibition [A.N., Jan. ‘56]. She paints nudes in the lush manner—heavy surfaces and thick strokes—which is becoming conventional among young New York artists. The figures are posed with an eye for odd angles, which add some garlic to the local cuisine. William Scharf—who has a job as a guard at the Museum of Modern Art—paints thinly, with washes of oil modeling sexy forms from the lexicon of Gorky. Some tiny sketches—somewhat over-lush—show a knack for vivid effects of hot colors and whipped-cream whites. Daniel Rice comes to the city via California and Black Mountain (where he worked near but not in the College). He paints beautiful walls of color, troweling on earth colors with stains of mineral hues spreading here and there. His big painting has an easy air of monumentality. The fourth artist, Alfred Skondovitch, was born in England, he is the least New Yorker of the New Yorkers. Something of a visionary, he sees marine landscapes in blue-greens that shimmer under impastos—a bit like Darrel Austin, but with a stronger quirk which saves the paintings from banality. They appear truly eccentric. Prices unquoted.