Monica Tap at Wynick/Tuck

This gifted Toronto painter has such pictorially generous instincts that she has to find ways to rein herself in a bit.

She does so by setting up some conceptual guidelines for herself in order to control and direct the rising tide of her sensuous way with pigment.

One of her methods is to harvest drawings she likes from art history, and project them here and there onto her big blank canvases. After which she sketches them in roughly with paint, and then, proceeds to engulf them into unrecognizability, using what has become, in this exhibition, a cascade of short nervous strokes falling all through the canvases like wind, water, weather, and willfulness.

Indeed, Tap’s pauseless need to make painted marks, to draw everywhere with her paintbrush, results in a brimming, oceanic lushness that turns her paintings into supersaturated solutions of colour and light. Tap is, in fact, a terrific colourist. Her Seachange, for example, a glorious mélange of creams, salmon pinks, greys and whites, all held in suspension by her rolling painterly handwriting, and her Brio, in pinks, oranges and yellow-golds, held down by navy-blue overdrawing, makes you glad you’ve got eyes.

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