From: Olivia Rush
Date: 14 April 2002
My sourness about this show may stem from my being turned away from the after party on the grounds that it was a sit-down dinner, when it seemed clear half of london had already been admitted and were not sitting down. Doigs paintings are incredibly popular referential, to what?, whimsical or freaky landscapes. He has managed to establish himself as one of the most successful and acclaimed painters of our times by painting post-impressionist landscapes a little awkwardly. After all of art's achievements: cubism, abexpressionism, minimalism, pop, conceptualism, we get pretty painterly paintings by Doig. It is indicative of the British fear of modern art. difficult art, that this should have happened. His paintings are really ok, although repetitive in their use of drips, the thick splodge highlight, and the fuzzy paint patch, he uses colour nicely and manages enough variation in method and imagery to occasionally surprise. Yet what are they: some photographically derived scapes, fussily painted upscale, evoking the idea of evocation, touching or challenging nothing, melancholic more in their indication of the bourgeois medocrity of collectors than in the way Corot's landscapes are. The minute you compare them to real art, the whole thing crumbles, and you are left looking in at the party, wondering when you will see some again.
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