Art Review

Friends Carry the Late Robin Rule's Gallery Forward With Joseph Coniff Show

Joseph Coniff (in parentheses) is only the second presentation to open at the Rule Gallery since the untimely death of Robin Rule late last year.

It was important to Rule that the gallery continue, so three longtime associates -- Valerie Santerli, Rachel Beitz and Hilary Morris -- are carrying on her vision. Rule might roll her eyes at the tumble-down character of the entry to the gallery, but she'd surely approve of the exhibition space where the Coniff show is installed.

See also: Best Parting Glance Denver 2014 -- Robin Rule's last show

The work is from Coniff's recent "Delineation" series, made up of sublimely elegant post-minimal paintings.

Coniff creates hard-edged works in which he stacks three horizontal bars. The bottom is broad and painted; the one in the center is covered in vellum adorned with a delicate graph pattern; and the one on top is a thinner bar of color. Despite the unnatural shades, it's clear that the works refer to landscapes.

Also included is an irreverent sculpture made from an upended lamppost stuck in a bucket of concrete, done last year. It provides the perfect counterpoint to the cerebral paintings and works on paper.

Through September 6 at Rule Gallery, 3254 Walnut Street, 303-800-6776, rulegallery.com.


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Michael Paglia is an art historian and writer whose columns have appeared in Westword since 1995; his essays on the visual arts have also been published in national periodicals including Art News, Architecture, Art Ltd., Modernism, Art & Auction and Sculpture Magazine. He taught art history at the University of Colorado Denver.
Contact: Michael Paglia