Cameron Welch

ROBERTA SMITH, The New York Times, April 22, 2022

Cameron Welch's solo show "Ru­ins," at Yossi Milo, is a knockout - in almost the physical sense. It is full of large, ambitious, bril­liantly executed mosaics with so many disparate cultural refer­ences, snarling faces and masks and intimations of violence that it can initially be hard to focus. Such artistic confidence and artisanal finesse can feel like Neo-Expressionism all over again and is especially reminiscent of the art of Jean-Michel' Basquiat, • although Basquiat had a finer appreciation of empty space and breathing room. Welch seems guided by an unwavering horror vacui. His mosaics carom from the Greco­Roman-African worlds to our own uneasy time, with many stops in between.

At the center of his mosaic
"Fugue State;' is a Pieta, with some role reversal: A woman in a Burberry plaid shroud lies across the lap of a probably male figure, perhaps Christ enthroned. To the left, a cherub and the Lamb of God. To the right, a prone female nude out of Modigliani, a devil wielding a brush and palette and a protester holding an anti-police sign who resembles Jordan Wolf­son's demonic animatronic pup­pet, ambiguously titled "Colored Sculpture." Welch, who is 31, was making paii;iting-collages before taking up mosaic a few years ago. He has improved rapidly, enriching and updating his medium with pieces of marble, stone and several kinds of reverse glass imagery ( ab­stract painting, photographs of ancient pottery, his handprints). To say that he might have discov­ered his artistic destiny is putting it mildly.

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