Grace Glueck, “Update 1984-85,” The New York Times, June 21, 1985

Update 1984-85 (White Columns, 325 Spring Street):

Each season, this nonprofit alternative space gives individual shows to 18 “emerging artists” in its small back gallery. And this group exhibition of paintings – one to an artist – brings them all out together in the large main room. Sad to report, it’s a less-than-inspired gathering. But four or five artists do stand out, which may be an O.K. average at that. Drew Shiflett’s “Big Fish,” a massive relief structure of acrylic, wood and paper, makes very nice plays of scale (no pun intended) and texture in its witty conjunction of a large, gray-brown fish and a smallish couple seated in a room. Marcia King’s feisty “Uptown,” another relief piece, is a work of inspired wit. Through the grandly arched windows of a patrician white structure that’s going to pot, we see collaged versions of President and Mrs. Reagan sharing their abode with several other occupants, including a trapeze artist.

Paint runs thick in Pam Weadick’s “Dune,” a hefty, impressive beachscape of monumentalized forms, and also in Barbara Friedman’s “Mirrored Head,” a giant cut-out of the back of a woman’s head, the face – in blue – revealed in a hand mirror. There’s a fine tension here between “real” and Expressionist color and form. Not quite in the key of these works, but very appealing is John Maggiotto’s small book of color photos taken off the television screen, teasing in their ambiguity. (Through June 29.)

Grace Glueck