‘Alain Biltereyst: Geo Land’ at Jack Hanley Gallery

Exhibition view. (Courtesy Jack Hanley Gallery)

Exhibition view. (Courtesy Jack Hanley Gallery)

Alain Biltereyst appropriates fragments of design he finds on the street to make acrylic-on-plywood paintings that read as a kind of left-handed minimalism with a strong undercurrent of Japanese heraldry. They come in two sizes, hardcover novel or dictionary, and are all unframed and untitled. He uses bright, primary reds and blues, as in one piece that stacks five X-acto blade shapes horizontally, in opposite directions, as if for a poster advertising a train station; a bilious yellow-green like millet porridge; light blue; lavender; pastel green; dark green; and a plastery, fingerprinted, hard-won, speck-marked white, through which red or blue gleam like blood under skin. But most of the work in the current show depends on indigo.

Whether because of their fragmentary inspiration, their modest size or their arrangement and rearrangement of a limited number of components—rectangles, triangles, that X-acto shape, parallelograms—the paintings pull well together, and Mr. Biltereyst has set them off in groups but hung them all in a single line. One group of four begins with a blue-and-white staircase, seen at an angle, separated into its constituent rectangles and thereby reborn as a composition of white on blue. Then comes five syncopated, steeply angled crosswalks; a structure of thin blue lines, like a windowpane in the shape of a Cabalistic diagram; and finally 36 indigo dominos, standing up or on their sides, in six irregular rows. It brings to mind a mechanical loom, a player piano, the I Ching, Maori tattoos or early Koranic calligraphy.

(Through June 22, 2014)

‘Alain Biltereyst: Geo Land’ at Jack Hanley Gallery