New York sculptor Bryan Hunt is rightly respected as an artist at once given to modern surprises--like a blimp-shaped form that appears to float--and a traditionalist who knows how to make bronze look like falling water or airy drapery. His present exhibition of half a dozen sculptures and twice as many works on paper finds him leaning to stylish nostalgia.
"Columbus and Isabella" retains trademark lumpy bronze but buried under the surface are suggestions of figures and hints of streamlined Buck-Rogers-ray-gun sculpture done in the Art Deco era by, say, Theodore Rozak. A study for the work confirms the impression by combining Expressionist brushwork and lathed science-fiction cast members that makes one think of an obscure figure like Wilfredo Lam. What is this, a game of art trivia?
More like an exercise in Post-Mod art-as-design blandishment. Art for easy looking. Such pretty evergreen patinas with accents of gold. If Hunt, for whatever reason, flirts with current fashion he does not do so at the expense of sculptural sensitivity. "Tempest I"--held up like a rod puppet--combines the look of a small tornado with with the curve of a classically draped female torso. Or is it Marilyn Monroe in that white swag-draped gown? (BlumHelman Gallery, 916 Colorado Ave., to March 5.)