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JOHN POMARA
at Barry Whistler Gallery
by Todd Camplin

The Hole Gallery in New York City just had their second Post Analog painting show. These works
were paintings influenced by computer images or software like Photoshop. Yet many of the
paintings in the show are hand painted. So these artists were attempting to create a look of
the digital screen. Christopher Wool and Albert Oehlen have played with line and form in
their painting which implies a feeling digital content. Both artists are displayed in dialogue
in the room dedicated to them at the new Marciano art museum in Los Angeles. Right in
the middle of the country is John Pomara. A professor at the University of Texas at Dallas
and a resident of the DFW area. His work has been at the forefront of expressing the
ideas and forms of digital glitch paintings here in Texas. His show at Barry Whistler
Gallery is one of his most ambitious yet.
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Look at Data-Distraction 2 and you will get a sense of the crazy anxiety he creates. The lines are
broken, the circles appear and disappear. The yellow on black and white seem to scream at you.
It is amazing to see such a bold, noisy painting with so few elements.

'Data-Distraction 2',
2017
'Daytripper',
2016
Cool-Aid 2,
2017
In case you are wondering, how much time do I have to see this exhibition? It ends this week! So if
you haven’t seen John Pomara’s Digital-Hypnosis: Paintings/Photos at Barry Whistler Gallery then
you only have until May 13th to see it.
John Pomara fills the gallery space with his play on the several visual fronts. Minimalist, digital,
geometric forms, formalism, street product, and even some photography are all in his playground
of art production. When looking at the works, you don’t have to point out the obvious minimalist
influence Pomara employs. He uses clean lines and shapes of geometric forms with sparse color
palate. Though his lines have more of a nervous energy opposed to the emotional calmness of
a Agnes Martin or Donald Judd. Pomara also uses spray paint, and I can’t imagine too many
Minimalist artists caring for such crass material. Now many important artists use spray paint, take
Christopher Wool. Although Pomara seems to have a precise application to his spray and
squeegee process.
Flower-Power
2017
'Circuit-Breaker,'
2017
John Pomara’s paintings might feel like glitch art, his photographs have the look of glitch. Pomara
has picked the internet’s ubiquitously nude or scantily clad woman. Which if you find yourself in
an art museum, you might notice they are all over the walls as much as the internet. Take a figure
drawing or figure painting class and you will likely paint the nude woman. Centuries of male taste
have shaped the images made in pictures. So, what is Pomara getting at by obscuring our view
of these images of women? This is not a colonization of importance in the female image by yet
another artist. This is also not a deconstructing of a partial image of a woman. Rather this is a
critical look at the cultural consumption of the female form. Beautiful in form laid waste by
process through digital means.