Barkley L. Hendricks is, quite easily, the most outstanding arbiter of understated style there is. With his iconic, large-scale figurative paintings, he presents his subjects in a cool-handed way which provides them with the space to be prominent and in-control, even if their elegantly clothed bodies seems to recede into the canvas.

It's a masterful touch that is quietly impressive. With the above painting, October's gone... Goodnight (1973), the effect is unmissable across the triplicate form of an elegant woman, standing in what could easily be an archival, columnar halter dress from Halston's heydays. We first see the woman, with that perfect brown-bronze skin, a tight Afro, and the slightly nonchalant stare that looks out beyond the rimmed spectacles and over our heads.

And the dress - such a classic piece - is an afterthought, a prop to her moment. 

Which is a bold way to render a portrait, given that the reverse is often true - we first see the garment, the guise, and the connotations that accompany one's sartorial choices, before we begin to notice the individual dwelling somewhere beneath the layers. Hendricks' simplicity was brilliant then, and it's brilliant now. 

See more of Hendricks' works at the Jack Shainman Gallery


NB Image Courtesy Jack Shainman

The Volume

  • Au Courant Vol. 02
    Edwin Jacobs, director of Centraal Museum Utrecht
    Looking around Gerrit Rietveld's modern space 
    Curator Martin van Nieuwenhuyzen on the artist's retrospective
    In studio with the Los Angles sculptor
    Works by Nadia Huggins, Monika Holzer alongside Rebecca Martin, Mark Jason-Weston, and Nick Wilkins. Literary writings by L.T. Harris, Caroline Mackenzie, and Breanne Mc Ivor.
    With Astier de Villatte, HER swimwear, Mariage Frères, Hôtel de NELL, La Garconne, Cahiers d'Art, and Rosemanclub.
    By Lisa-Marie Harris.
  • Buy Now

Of Interest

Astier de Villatte Incense and Pottery
Astier de Villatte

Fine Japanese incense blends and hand-crafted pottery from the Parisian home wares maison.
Japanese made eyewear from Rosemanclub
Rosemanclub Eyewear

Japanese made eyewear inspired by classic shapes, from Thailand's Rosemanclub Eyewear.
Mariage Frères Thé Maison
Mariage Frères Thé

Exquisite loose leaf, speciality, and blended herbal teas from the longstanding Parisian Maison.
Gerrit Rietveld Furniture Design
Hôtel de NELL, Paris

An understated, modernist 5-star hotel & spa with a minimalist design outlook in the heart of Paris.