Collection: William Schwedler

Born, raised and educated in Chicago, Schwedler could not help but be influenced by the local artistic milieu particularly with those contemporaries and friends who formed the Hairy Who in the Mid - 1960's Franz Schulze (Chicago Imagist Art, 1972 ) has observed of Schwedler, "... his work took on its fundamental character during his chicago years. if the city did not form him it was surely the place where his formative experiences occurred ..." Schwedler was at the Art Institute of Chicago in the early sixties at the same time as the artist Jim Nutt, Art Green & Karl Wirsum. Befitting an artist born and trained in Chicago, Schwedler was much affected by funk and given to jokey titles and weird imagery, such as a section of a bedspring angled like sky across a pale blue ground. But his colors, which seem as if they are veiled by fine black gauze, don't fit with the jokes. In the 12 years covered by the show, he worked mainly geometrically, alluding to figures occasionally in paint and collage, and he sometimes accentuated shapes by building them up in Rhoplex. Toward the end, he was painting on undulating bands of plywood mounted to stand a couple of feet off the wall. But his strangest and strongest pieces seem those of 1974, when he was exploring an all-over network of lines like cracks in plaster. In ''All Show, No Go,'' they are black on a muted pink ground and open up in three or four places to disclose whorls of black lines on red, yellow and other bright colors. This is Surrealism that projects a very unhumorous sense of matter decomposing, in the Ivan Albright tradition.

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