Marilyn Minter, Green Pink Caviar @Salon 94 Freemans

JTF (just the facts): A total of 8 works on view: 5 paintings, 2 photographs and 1 video. The photographs are c-prints, made in 2008 and 2009, 86×60, unframed and loosely binder clipped to the walls. The paintings are enamel on metal, in various sizes from 40×20 to 108×180, and unframed. All are hung in a single room gallery, with one painting hiding behind the corner of the partition. (Installation shot of the photographs, at right.)

Comments/Context: Marilyn Minter’s show of new work at Salon 94 Freemans continues to explore a style that has made her images instantly recognizable from across a room: photographs and hyper real paintings that walk the fine line between over-the-top fabulous and more than a little disturbing, creating just enough tension to keep us looking. In this set of works, sensuous mouths, lips, tongues and fingers variously push and smear cake decorations (sparkly silver balls, pink flaked sugar, and unidentified goo tinted with food coloring) and bubble gum across glass plates, the pictures and videos taken from underneath, capturing watery swirls, squishes and distortions in gorgeous close-up. While the photographs are hauntingly crisp and clear, the paintings have a slightly more airbrushed, commercial feel, the subtle hint of cheesiness somehow matching the subject matter. The video Green Pink Caviar is currently being shown on the huge MTV billboard in Times Square; a smaller version runs in the gallery. It’s a little like watching a car crash; unsettling but nevertheless oddly engrossing.

Collector’s POV: Not surprisingly, I think Minter’s photographs are far more successful than her paintings; the real life detail captured by the lens makes the images all the more mesmerizing. And while Minter’s works don’t fit into our collection at all, I continue to be impressed with the uniqueness of her voice as an artist; no one else’s work looks like this, and my guess is that some of her images will likely age quite well (there always seems to be a place for decadence). The two photographs in this show are priced at $32000, in editions of 3 plus 2 APs. Two of the paintings are not for sale; the other three are priced at $55000, $70000, and $130000 respectively. A copy of the limited edition video is available on DVD for $40. A handful of Minter’s photographs have started to appear at auction in past couple of years, ranging in price between $10000 and $55000, usually in editions of 3, 5 or 7.

Rating: * (1 star) GOOD (rating system described here)

Transit Hub:

  • Green Pink Caviar website, with trailer (here)
  • SFMOMA solo show, 2005 (here)
  • Reviews: ArtObserved (here), New York (here)

Marilyn Minter, Green Pink Caviar
Through June 13th

Salon 94 Freemans
1 Freeman Alley
New York, NY 10002

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