September 2010, David Scher @ Pierogi

David Scher, Untitled, 2010
Oil and acrylic on canvas, 24 x 36 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery


David Scher: regular is best
Pierogi Gallery
177 North 9th Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
September 10 through October 10, 2010


Regular is best is a domineering display of David Scher’s most recent work. A handful of oil-based paintings of cloudy steel-blue, grey, and eggshell consume the attention of the main gallery. Characterized by disorientation and variation, these large paintings reference headspace rather than physical environ. Untitled (2010) is a side-show theater gone awry. Two spectators, found at bottom-left of the canvas, observe a bevy of objects conjured up in frantic gesture. Ranging from a showerhead spurting out of the ceiling to a small fox-like creature and a grade school desk stacked with books, the items divulge the painterly conflict between two dimensional objects situated in a three-dimensional scene. The objects are placeless and freeform. Opaque backgrounds obfuscate the imagination, scrambling the deluge of symbols and storylines. Sundry characters and levels of existence are nonsensical and irreducible, annunciating the flightiness of extracurricular contemplation and its unfathomable vigor. The inclusion of text distances the viewer from the scene, labeling conceptual points as a thought bubble reveals hints in a comic book. The image is unstable, volatile, and jarring; the objects could sink into the milky void as easily as the text could emerge to narrate their demise. Scher’s paintings are like the dissolution of an amphetamine binge, swamped with hazy, nonlinear, industrious streams of consciousness. Scher’s compositions reveal the mind’s ability to recognize visual totems while accounting for and indulging in the detours.

Scher’s reverie is restricted by mentions of tactility, implants of reality. Mixed media deviously interjects in several images, pulling concrete details out of his dense visions. Even in the ambiguity of the cerebral environ, the prevalence of wildlife is grounding. The large paintings each refer to the wilderness: a solitary plane containing a sapling and tentative squirrel, a boat staring out into the emptiness of the callous sea, and what could be either weeds or singed foliage in a flowerbed among the presented works. Untitled (2010) is one of the more colorful and massive oil works on linen. The right half of the canvas unearths an older gentleman eating alone at a wide table. The impressionistic, delineated lines dissolve in the middle of the image, transporting the viewer out of the dining room and into the boondocks. At left, a deer lounges with its back to the audience next to a rock. The ground is cloaked in a kaleidoscopic cushion. Transitionally flawless, Scher intertwines beauty and beast. He summons dreamscapes in his contradictions, enunciating contrasts between the gluttonous pig and modestly content deer.

Visual unity is further deflowered in Scher’s drawings and objects, churned out with fervor from his restless hand. These poignant vignettes are displayed in the second gallery. Flyswatter (2004) is an antique torture tool of the same name with “SORRY” adhered to the lattice. Untitled (2007) is an ink on paper image portraying a decapitated goat head in the midst of sketchy, stark curtains. These smaller pieces are instigators, ennobling the flickers of imagination and incinerating context. The sizeable oils, all untitled save for one, similarly transport viewers to Scher’s internal carousel of imagery and words. There is no circumstance and no consequence within which his images are based. His work is speckled with legible memories and inconsistent thought patterns, the stuff that the best dreams are made of. He embraces inconsistencies and liberates dreams from reality, swerving between familiar planes of space immersed in the euphoria of nightly hallucinations.


David Scher, Untitled, 2010
Oil on linen, 60 x 84 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Outboard Motor Man, 2010
Ink on paper, 22 x 29 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Untitled, 2010
Oil-base enamel on linen, 42 x 48 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Park Avenue, 2009
Ink on paper, 12 1/2 x 9 7/8 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Untitled, 2007
Ink on paper, 9 1/2 x 12 1/2 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Hare, 2010
Watercolor on paper, 14 x 17 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery

David Scher, Untitled, 1988
Photographs, 14 x 8 inches
Courtesy, the artist and Pierogi Gallery



Lynn Maliszewski

Lynn Maliszewski is a freelance writer and aspiring curator/collector residing in New York City. She can be reached at

PHOTO CREDIT: Benjamin Norman (

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