Joy Garnett’s paintings of fiery, storm-swollen skies are about turbulence in a larger sense.
~ Holland Cotter, The New York Times, Art in Review, Aug 11, 2006. Review of group show at Sara Meltzer Gallery, NY
In Garnett’s paintings, the Luminist celebration of the transcendental landscape gives way to the 20th-century encounter with the apocalyptic sublime.
~ Christopher Phillips, Art in America, November 1999. Review of solo show at Debs & Co., NY
Garnett[‘s]… work parallels that of collagists and appropriators… But these straightforward paintings are not visual collages so much as conceptual collages; the comments on art and technology are invisible, while the planetary/atmospheric ramifications take front stage.
~ Lucy R. Lippard, in Convergence: The Art Collection of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), Washington, DC, 2012; first published as a catalogue essay for Strange Weather, NAS, 2006.
Situated within the drama of the natural world with its organic historicity, the artist plunges US into layered, associative and resonant horizons.
~ Deborah Frizzell, catalogue essay for solo show at Slag Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, 2016
Although they verge on abstraction, the canvases provoke memories by drawing on the lingua franca of documentary news photographs. Garnett’s talent is for simultaneously imbuing these sublime landscapes with a hushed vastness that nearly nullifies their perilous circumstances.
~ Lauren O’Neill-Butler, Artforum Critics’ Pick, Feb 2008. Review of solo show at Winkelman Gallery, NY
Joy Garnett continues her project of painting the contemporary political landscape, in this case in images derived from news reports of burning Paris immigrant neighborhoods.
~ Holland Cotter, The New York Times, Aug 2007. Review of group show at Stellan Holm Gallery, NY
By recasting this technologized form of war and bodily destruction in the human hand with paint on canvas, Garnett uses the representational strategies of digital spectacle to reinsert the human in the destruction that spectacle hides.
~ Benjamin Godsill, from “Digital Detournements/(un)Reality Television,” in Image War: Contesting Images of Political Conflict, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 2006 (exhibition catalogue essay).
Perhaps the show’s most graphic moment comes from Joy Garnett’s “Death Penalty in Black and White,” which tabulates the racial imbalance between federal prosecutors and prisoners on death row.
~ Roberta Smith, The New York Times, Aug 2004. Review of group show at Foxy Production, NY
Garnett’s brushy impasto pushes the verité elements of the images (which are derived from news photos) toward glam.
~ The New Yorker, 2004-02-09. Review of solo show at Debs & Co., NY
It’s in this paradoxical realm of terrible beauty that the canvases are most engaging, tying together the histories of the bomb and American landscape painting.
~ Tim Griffin, TimeOutNY, June 3-10, 1999. Review of solo show at Debs & Co., NY
The explosive impact of Abstract Expressionism, with its unprecedented scale and simplicity, has often been compared to that of atomic fission, but the two Manhattan Projects of the forties have seldom been linked as neatly as they are in this exhibition of Cold War flash cards, painted from declassified photographs of bomb tests.
~ The New Yorker, June 7, 1999. Review of solo show at Debs & Co., NY
There’s one image here that stands out. It has a kind of shock value the other works…don’t have. […] Garnett… has, without hysteria and with a lot of smart geo-political positioning, created a work that is a modern day Albert Pinkham Ryder ‘Death riding through the land’ painting.
~ Roberta Fallon, artblog, February 22, 2005. Review of group show at the Abington Art Center, Jenkintown, PA