While living in Rome in the 1970s, Wally Reinhardt became infatuated with Ovid’s “Metamorphoses.” I like the idea that a person with no formal background or training can disrespect boundaries while creating work that seems unstable and undependable.
“Back in New York, in 1984, Mr. Reinhardt took up art himself with no formal background or training. Using colored pencil and gouache, he began drawing his favorite Ovidian scenes, later swapping out the gouache for watercolor… His loose-jointed, naked heroes and giants stride freely across boxes’ edges, even from page to page in polyptychs, while the colors of his stagy green hills and star-dappled indigo skies often stop just shy of their outlines.
All these casually disrespected boundaries, along with Mr. Reinhardt’s whimsical draftsmanship, make the mythological world he depicts seem very unstable — exciting, undependable. In other words, it’s all pretty sexy….”
(Will Heinrich, “What to See in New York Art Galleries Right Now [Wally Reinhardt],” NYTimes, 3-6-19)
(c) 2019 JMN.