Roamin’ the E.Village

Will Grant

            When I Got this assignment, I roamed merrily over the East Village, but then the roof fell In (another article) and the squeeze was on.
            R.V., known internationally as a street painter, shows “What will you do when the War comes?” which I appreciate, for I’ve been asking myself the same question for forty years. He does have a naive power in these works at Now Gallery, 430 East 9 Street, till June 2, because it makes simple statements with no hedging or fudging. I agree with all of them.
            R.V.’s (Robin Van Arsdol) paintings are simplified graphic metaphors. One wall is all images in black with a ground of one color, though the words, “I DESTROYED THE ENEMY” and a ship’s outline are in white on a blue gray ground. R.V.’s tanks form a procession of obscene bugs. I’m sly enough to see, beneath it all, that the composition is well handled and the image gains conviction with sensitive brush handling. The seriously subject is also made more real by a tilt of humor, as “What will you do when war comes?... Hide under the table!”


Picture: R.V., “Bad Jet Among the Clouds,” Now Gallery