Denver Art Gallery



April 15, 2010 _ Dever Post

Celebrated color-field painter is back at it
Kyle MacMillan

Virginia Maitland,
"Androgynous Strain,
" 66 by 72 inches.
(Sandra Phillips Gallery)

After venturing down a mishmash of other stylistic pathways, Virginia Maitland has returned to the vibrant color-field paintings that Virginia Maitland, "Androgynous Strain," 66 by 72 inches.

(Sandra Phillips Gallery) defined the Denver abstractionist in the 1970s and remain her most celebrated body of work. In those pieces, she adopted a technique invented in the 1950s by Helen Frankenthaler. Paint is poured onto untreated canvas, staining rather than coating the surface, and the result is floating, translucent abstract imagery. Examples of the veteran Denver artist's latest takes on the style dominate a solo exhibition running through May 30 at the Sandra Phillips Gallery, 744 Santa Fe Drive.
As strong as some of these new offerings are, the show-stopper is a stunning 1974 painting Maitland recently rediscovered in her studio — "Androgynous Strain" (66 by 72 inches). With its ideal balance of freedom and structure, it is surely among her best pieces ever.

303-573-5969 or Kyle MacMillan



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