The uniform square shape of Jay Sagen’s seven 4’x 4’ paintings serve to neatly frame strange black and white biomorphic blobs and drips; each panel is a single glimpse into a larger, unknown, whole. The abstract pools of latex paint edged with non-reflecting rivulets and dribbles of India ink look, in turns, like microscopic views of alien cellular tissue and then like parts of strange misshapen creatures themselves. Get closer and the abstraction becomes clear. There is no representation here, but ample abstract play – drips are painted lines and what first appeared to be simply black and white now has hovering gray clouds and gold flecks, which upon even closer inspection become spots where the paint has been gouged away to reveal the particle board underneath (At Space Gallery, Orange County).

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