|Sightings: Dee Shapiro
On "Sightings" by Dee Shapiro
Looking at these miniature paintings makes you see. A city or country scene is returned from cliche to epiphany. Sites you pass every day, the ordinary you bypass, are rendered in exquisite detail, color.
There are no trees. No people. Yet feeling is bursting from the hot and cold color, from the geometry within these thin, small horizontal canvases. Like the self-reflection of the four country houses in a pond, the artist's perception is so true to itself it makes us trust our own perception.
The downtown Brooklyn scene beyond the green fence on the BQE; the arch of the next bridge seen through the fence of the Triborough Bridge; a huddle of distinguished or undistinquished uptown or downtown buildings or lonely farmhouses you'd drive past on a country road...Shapiro's point of view conceives the multiplicity it details intricately despite the scale.
In city and country we see the contrast of close edifices: a Victorian home beside one with no character, the Chrysler building gleaming among smokestacks and high rises. Yet the whole coheres, the unimportant and the important, side by side.
There is something dreamlike in the real: something common in the dream. We recognize that orange sky, that sensuous curve in the landscape. The real scene really seen is fantastic in these tiny canvases that read like poems.
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