There is a lot of talk about de Kooning these days, what with the AbEx shows that are going on all over the place, and particularly about his woman images and the inherent violence in them. I see that in many of them, and even in Woman Standing - Pink, with that slash of vermilion right across her lower abdomen, but I think what he was going for was the grotesque. I think he was always going for the grotesque, but the methodology, and perhaps his own biases towards a slasher-like style of figuration, impart a violent aspect and by choosing woman as his subjects, that becomes a problematic issue. It makes it hard for me to synthesize his works within my own vision of abstract expressionist modality because I can sense something dark lurking behind each picture.
I am not as big a fan of Woman Standing - Pink as I am of the other de Kooning in The Anderson that I'll write about a little today, but I recognize that this is what Abstract Expressionism needed with Pollock and Rothko riding tall - they needed a figurativist to apply the concepts they were working with to bring another view. It works, but today, I find it painful.
Christopher J Garcia - Curator, Fan Writer, Podcaster, and a guy who just loves art.