The urban world is made up of shapes and colors. Just look, you’ll see them eventually. If not, there’s always the art of Kathleen Catanese to help you out. Working from images she takes with her phone, she proceeds to charcoal sketches, and from there to watercolors and eventually oil on canvas. But it’s her city scenes printed in dark gray, with brilliant tones stuck on using the chine collé technique—in which thin paper shapes are adhered to a ground during the printing process—that truly make a modernist artwork of downtown. The roped-off nightclub entryway in “Lilac Door with Smile No. 5” has the catenary of a late Jasper Johns and the overlapping rectangular color play of Josef Albers. “The Hot Pink Ladder No 15,” with its acid green sky, magenta foreground building and faded black silhouettes, features a Warhol palette and begs to be repeated, in any number of different hues. The city begets modern art, and the city is modern art.
—Lori Waxman 10/13/2023 3:59