Press

“Michael Barringer’s engrossing abstract images are typically replies to poems. Memory, bodily impermanence, and the spiritual journey are among the topics. To render these intangible themes, the artist compiles imagery in layers of gesso, charcoal, pastel, acrylic, and oil pigment that reveal themselves to the viewer only gradually. The eye finds as much pleasure in discerning what has been obscured as in interpreting what is readily apparent. Symbolic revelations come to the viewer alongside pure physical delight.”
-Jerry Cullum, for ARTnews

“You won’t find a more sensuous exhibition in town than Art-Walk’s ‘Wax Works’. Artists can layer the wax, incise it and build onto its surface. The results can be luscious, both in color and texture. The artists selected by Marianne Lambert exemplify the wide range of effects encaustic allows. Michael Barringer uses the wax as veils of tints and color and confines it to specific sites on the composition. Inspired by literature, Barringer creates works that are poetic in their own right, using words and abstract images.”
-Catherine Fox, for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“What is a Barringer epic? The artist does not have a political agenda or desire to proselytize. His tale is one of a pantheist and collectivist, seeking connections between art, science, mathematics, poetry and music. Barringer finds ‘faith in beauty’, an unusual stance for a contemporary abstract artist, though perhaps this brand of impeccably crafted modernism betokens the creation of the ‘New Old Masterism’ that critic Donald Kuspit called for. Perhaps this is how the new millennium will redefine the complexity and obscurity of modern art.”
-Mary Webb, for The Memphis Commercial Appeal

“Michael Barringer invites the eye’s mind to create a lexicon of line and color, whether carefully rendered or impulsively gestured – a gentle profusion of thick and thin, rough and gentle, mechanical and free hand. Such a soft work does not happen by accident, and with such an appreciation, the viewer can consider the work’s genesis in the moment and the passage in time since then.”
-Anthony Bannon, for The Chautauquan Daily

“For Barringer, it is the idea that certain symbols are universal, having been made long before the advent of language or writing. His layering of paint and the overlay of such symbols as the circle, the pyramid and the square are his attempt to unearth universal truths. As I was looking at this particular canvas, I felt I was looking through a scrim, and if it was raised I could see the foundations of thought, which Barringer believes are embedded in these ancient signs. In these paintings, his path is to find the basic forms that would be accessible to all peoples, whether they live now or were here at the beginning of time.”
-Blue Greenberg, for the Durham Herald-Sun