Night Boardwalk

Adria Arch’s new paintings start with a splash. Working in an intuitive, gestural tradition, she brings in the element of chance at the beginning. The liquid spill, a pooling pour of paint, is the first mark. It’s the chosen way of activating the space of the white canvas. It is the first step that determines a causative sequence of subsequent marks.

That’s the intellectual explanation, for works that are really more concerned with feeling and surprise and bursts of energy. Arch lets the abstract contour, and the initial color, of that first exuberant gesture determine the spaces she builds across her large-scale surfaces. There’s a freedom, and a sense of play, that is expansive and engaging.

Shawn Hill, art critic