But Is It Kitsch?

Ms. Cohen’s kaleidoscopic geometric abstractions are Malevich with a sense of humor. Elsewhere she brings a crisp design sense to

Ms. Cohen’s kaleidoscopic geometric abstractions are Malevich with a sense of humor. Elsewhere she brings a crisp design sense to an exquisitely unassuming art.

The Geometry of Seeing is at Pavel Zoubok Gallery, 533 West 23rd Street, until Dec. 15; an attendant exhibition is at Julie Saul Gallery, 535 West 22nd Street, until Jan. 12.

Best Worst Case

Norbert Bisky’s paintings, at Leo Koenig, Inc., are as light as cotton candy and as innocent in their own melodramatic way as a vintage muscle magazine. Awash in synthetic blue, anonymous young men cavort, fuck and pose in a torrent of disjointed images: Crucifixions, money shots, decapitations, hurricanes and “aquageddon.”

The disaster scenarios are a false sell: Mr. Bisky’s watery tableaus are brisk, breezy and frivolous. Nothing holds them together pictorially, least of all a touch incapable of distinguishing between casual and cursory. The paintings are more joyous than you might expect; more pretentious too.

Norbert Bisky: What’s Wrong With Me? is at Leo Koenig, Inc., 545 West 23rd Street, until Dec. 22.

Subatomic

Michael Rosenfeld Gallery’s overview of abstract paintings by Charles G. Shaw (1892-1974) stops well short of definitive: Not one of the 35 on display postdates the 1940’s. It’s hard to discern how Shaw’s lumpish pastiches of Cubism, Klee, Miró and Arp differ from any number of stateside wannabe’s. Only in fits and starts do we glimpse the reductive eccentric Shaw would become.

An untitled 1940 painting is one of them: In it, an obdurate rectangle and upended triangle are taunted by a duo of vaguely subatomic pictograms. Mondrian would have loathed its gritty textures. Contemporary sensibilities will find Shaw’s blatant poke at neoplasticism surprisingly of the moment.

Charles G. Shaw is at Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, 24 West 57th Street, until Dec. 22.

But Is It Kitsch?