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"Equanimity" 

When: March 28-April 27 2013
Price: free

Polish-born artist Andrzej Michael Karwacki strives to register neither emotion nor thought in his abstract paintings, aiming instead for a sort of silent expansiveness. Equanimity, his series now at Slate Contemporary Gallery, is certainly cucumber-cool. The artist's process of mixing thin layers of paint and water helps to efface any overt gestural quality, and the ultimate encasement of each birch panel in resin freezes the set into definite objecthood. With the works, which come in different proportions of rectangle, sequenced along the wall with rhythmic spacing, the display reads as classic minimalism in somewhat more cheerful, Zen garb. But there are some cracks in this "equanimity": In one work, full pages torn from a copy of The Age of Innocence show clearly through the thinned layers of paint. Can this really claim to carry neither ideas nor emotion? That will probably depend on the viewer. Equanimity runs through April 27 at Slate Contemporary Gallery (473 25th St., Oakland). 510-652-4085 or SlateContemporary.com

— Alex Bigman

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