The exhibition of John Chamberlain’s metal paintings from the mid-1960s at the Dan Flavin Art Institute in Bridgehampton has not exactly set the world on fire, but it is the kind of focused, well-considered presentation complementing the Flavin installation upstairs that the Dia Art Foundation, which owns the institute, turns out annually.
With a changeover about to occur after April 27, it is worth catching it before it goes. The paintings are far more brilliant and complex than their reproductions would suggest. They have a Day-Glo, flower-power feeling from the era, which also brings into play the hard-edged abstraction of Minimalism.
“It Ain’t Cheap,” the title of the show, takes its name from the one sculpture included in the show from the same period. Several of the paintings, which were made with car paint and metal flake, are named from popular musical groups from the time, such as the Lovin’ Spoonful and the Sensations.
The paintings, which are rarely exhibited, were first shown at the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York in 1965.