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Review: Mira Schnedler's 'Erupt' crosses boundaries with panache

June 26, 2013|By David Pagel
  • Mira Schnedler's "Siesta in Palm Springs II," 2012 oil on canvas.
Mira Schnedler's "Siesta in Palm Springs II," 2012 oil… (From Mira Schnedler / Jancar…)

If anything defines our times, it’s that everything seems to be running together. Movies look like comic books. Reality and television are in bed with each other. News and entertainment appear to have fused.

And interpersonal communication, otherwise known as social networking, has become a form of advertising — a kind of self-promotion that replaces the give-and-take of conversations with the monotony of monologues.

At Jancar Gallery, the six punchy paintings in “Erupt,” Mira Schnedler’s first solo show in the United States, begin with the blurry boundaries of the day.

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But rather than stirring them into an overcooked stew of bland superficiality, the German-born, L.A.-based painter makes a virtue of incompatibility, inconsistency, irresolution. Sparks fly in the mind’s eye.

No two canvases look alike. No single painting is composed of a single style. Genres collide as still life, portraiture and landscape get caught in the crossfire that Schnedler orchestrates. Raw canvas, swiftly scribbled lines, faint washes of color and meaty smears of pigment make for energized compositions whose restlessness is infectious.

Schnedler is a master of inconsistency. Compositional dissonance is her specialty. Neither figuration nor abstraction gets the upper hand. Single paintings often have the presence of three or four works that have been disassembled and intermingled.

Others, including “Siesta in Palm Springs,” seem to be disintegrating right before your eyes — going off, with a bang, like fireworks.

With good old American efficiency, Schnedler brings French Impressionism and German Expression into a charged argument. The results aren’t always pretty, but that’s why they work.

Jancar Gallery, 961 Chung King Rd., (213) 625-2522, through July 13. Closed Sun.-Tues. www.jancargallery.com

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