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Review: Ken Konchel/ARC Gallery

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An old-school modernist straight black-and-white photographic abstractionist, Ken Konchel shoots details of the most powerful architectural structures that he can find to create geometric force fields that assault the viewer’s eye. With a proclivity for massive concrete and steel forms that his framing places in juxtaposition, Konchel’s aesthetic combines the sense of imposing brute solidity with the subtlety of twists and turns, and intensifies the play through the varied visual relations among the components of the designs he intuits, producing an effect of elegant monumentalism that is reminiscent of Alexander Rodchenko, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy and Paul Strand. Konchel’s subjects are overmastering; we feel them confront us and sense that we can do nothing to alter them, as in “Into Joe”—his most abstract study—in which the black silhouetted masses dissolve into obdurate blocks. (Michael Weinstein)

Through September 25 at ARC Gallery, 832 W. Superior

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