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"Heaven Is a Place on Earth" 

Wednesday, Apr 11 2007
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Jacob Dahlgren is a young Swedish artist in love with color and pattern who finds his inspiration in everyday life and his source materials in mundane objects. He has made dozens of paintings by precisely copying the patterns of his striped T-shirts. (He owns hundreds.) Repetition is his mantra and in his installations he transforms found objects (yogurt cups, ribbons, dart boards) into art. In a series of paintings shown here, he juxtaposes strips of pastel-colored commercial paint chips, a quiet bow to the painter Agnes Martin. With black-and-white plastic IKEA coat hangers, he creates an "endless column," tipping his hat to the sculptor Brancusi and the Op-art painter Bridget Riley. In his informal photographs we see through his eyes as he looks at the world. Stripes and checks are everywhere — on his girlfriend's ear muffs, on caution tapes at the airport, and on the shirt of the burly customer at the checker-tiled fast food shop. His appetite for color is voracious and his sense of humor contagious. Dahlgren has created numerous public commissions in Europe such as highway roundabouts, student unions, and corporate headquarters. He will be representing Sweden in the Nordic Pavilion at the 2007 Venice Biennale. —L.F.

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Lea Feinstein

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