December 8, 2010
How to explain the fact that Nicholas Krushenick’s art has flown below the radar for so long, despite recurrent attempts to revive interest his work, and despite the fact that it not only is in itself excellent but self- evidently fills a niche that needs to be filled—namely that of the missing link between hard-edge abstraction and Pop art? Alas, he is that cursed thing, an artist’s artist. I was reminded of this again last year when I saw a piece of his in “The Jewel Thief” (2010), a remarkable exhibition curated by Jessica Stockholder (with Ian Berry) at the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY—what a surprise to see Krushenick’s work there, and then a moment later it wasn’t surprising: Of course an eye as sharp and unconventional as Stockholder’s would “get” him. So do artists such as Tom Burckhardt, Kathy Butterly, Mary Heilmann, Thomas Nozkowski, and David Reed, all of whom have contributed brief statements—love letters, really—to the catalogue for this eye- opening mini-retrospective, whose fifteen paintings and two collages trace the artist’s development from 1961 through 1998, the year before his death. The catalogue also includes a thorough essay by John Yau and lengthy excerpts from a 1968 interview for the Archives of American Art.