A line of hazy, barely seen horses parade across the slate grey works, tinged with red and rust streaks, like an effervescent trace of something once present, now half-forgotten. In a solo exhibition at Jenny’s, frottage, a technique for taking rubbings, gives rise to Enzo Shalom’s pale and haunting images on paper. Etched, like gravestone rubbings, they betray belabored surfaces, criss-crossed strokes before being layered with soft pastels and hatched with halting pencil lines.
A technique with Surrealist roots, Shalom’s frottage works sometimes draw upon that psychoanalytic tradition. In one piece, upright scissors dig their tips into a surface which is alternatively landscape, fabric, or flesh. Elsewhere, they reference Surrealist staples such as automatic drawings or photomontage through impressions of what seems like the odds and ends of a sewing basket: buttons, baubles, the texture of lace doilies, all softly revealed with the side of a pencil.
Enzo Shalom, Propping Against, 2021. Graphite, lacquer, acrylic on paper mounted on panel, 18 x 15 inches.