(France, colloquial) to French kiss, make out (kiss (a person) while inserting one’s tongue into his or her mouth).

Robert Bordo (b. 1949 in Montreal, Canada. Lives and works in New York) Dungaree and The Look, from Robert Bordo’s recent series of abstract/figurative “skinny jean” paintings, both present and reveal content in their surfaces and their substrates. A luminous under painting is glimpsed beneath the surface of these denim colored monochromes, the depicted bodies appear as glowing contours. The image is drawn by palette knife, a surface sketch presenting an unstable image that is both humorous and erotic (an ass being checked out) and deeply psychological (a skull having a Hamlet moment). About looking and being looked at simultaneously, Bordo’s “jean” paintings conjure desire and introspection. Bordo makes thematic paintings that integrate a notion of formalism with a range of personal and theoretical narratives. His work has been shown in MoMA PS1 Greater New York, the Sheldon Museum of Art, Artist Space, and Museum für Gegenwartskunst in Basel, and the Brooklyn Museum.

Nancy Brooks Brody (b. 1962 in New York, NY. Lives and works in New York) “often employs abstraction to obliquely represent the body and its surroundings. In Brody’s Glory Hole paintings (2008-2013), plaster grounds are crossed with intricate, irregular grids painted in black or white, recalling the spiritual abstraction of Agnes Martin. Though the paintings appear monochromatic at first glance, extended viewing reveals a hidden layer of prismatic color: Brody incorporates colored pigments into the black and grey plaster bases and mixes gridlines with colored oil paint, creating the sensation of a pulsing center as the underlying color becomes subtly perceptible. Like circular rainbows, or glories, the gridlines are colored in concentric bands that radiates outwards from violet to red. Alluding to sites of hidden or illicit sexual pleasure, Brody generates the paintings’ sensory effects through the play and exposure and concealment.” She currently has work on view in the exhibition Trigger: Gender as a Tool and a Weapon at the New Museum in New York. Her work has also been included in exhibitions at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, the Brooklyn Museum, and is in the permanent collection at MOCA in Los Angeles.

Lena Henke (b. 1982 in Warburg, Germany. Lives and works in New York). Lena Henke’s series of Galocher sculptures, from which the exhibition derives its name, links her interests in urban history, architecture, and the human body. Henke’s five works are free floating drawings. These lines and loops made from resin-coated, hand-woven ropes, were exhibited in Made in Germany, at the Sprengel Museum Hannover earlier this year. The fiberglass ropes are twisted and contorted into bodies and their parts, rendering egg-cells, wombs, and eyes, drawn in space and hovering atop steel stands. Inspired by simple children’s drawings, they refer to Rudolf Steiner's concept of the seven-year cycle, according to which the drawings of the first seven years in life form the basis for later developments. Henke’s recent solo shows have been presented at venues including Schirn Kunsthalle, Kunstverein Braunschweig, and at White Flag Projects, St. Louis. She will have a solo show at Kunsthalle Zürich and will be part of the group show Between the Waters at the Whitney Museum, both opening in March 2018.

Caitlin Keogh (b. 1982 in Anchorage, Alaska. Lives and works in New York). Caitlin Keogh’s large, graphic paintings incorporate wide-ranging source material, from decorative elements of the Arts & Crafts movement, to illuminated manuscripts and medical journals. Her style’s informational clarity belies the ambiguous and often discomfiting subject matter. The painting entitled Mutation of Fortune, both large and small, showcases the significant role color plays in the work. Borrowing elements from 17th century decoration and medieval statuary, Keogh’s painting is transformed from one version to another by reverting from restrained to expansive palette. Flattened and expertly rendered, the paintings depict disembodied hands and books in place of bodies that contain information, have spines, wear jackets. Closer and Closer suggests a dark humor, enlarging the whimsical marginalia of vintage postcards into fantastical biomorphic creatures. Keogh’s work has been shown at The Whitney Museum of American Art, Künstlerhaus Bremen, and MoMA PS1. She will be the subject of a solo exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, opening May 2018.