Sweets have their place in contemporary art, highest of all in the irresistibly sincere and orderly cake paintings of Wayne Thiebaud. Those who prefer irony can turn instead to the up-close food photographs of Martin Parr. It’s hard to know just where Patrick Tayler stands, with his small-to-midsize oils full of pastries and packaged candies. It helps to consider the garishly colored pictures as installed at Ari Kupsus Gallery in Budapest, where in December a selection was exhibited (though mostly viewable only online) in the suggestively titled It’s a Matter of Taste. The curlicued decorativeness of the gallery’s antique furnishings and objects went match for match with the layers of sugary icing and shiny wrapping depicted in the paintings. Whether gilded scrollwork or Haribo gummies are more to your liking is indeed just a matter of taste, in both cases for something that promises immediate satisfaction, palatable flavors and, if you’re not careful, lots of cavities.
—Lori Waxman 2021-03-02 3:57 PM