Reviews

Max Estenger is an artist who has been living and working in New York City since 1989. For many years, he was represented by the Steffany Martz Gallery in Chelsea and had three one-person shows there until the gallery closed in 2001. His work has been featured in Artforum, FlashArt, Tema Celeste, artnet, Review, and Timeout New York among others. He was most recently featured in the book, La Couleur Importee (Readymade Color).

“Max’s new stuff emerges in two concretized streams: splendid stripes which psychedelically advance the concerns of Ellsworth Kelly and Gene Davis, while being far superior to both…Estenger may yet escape the constraints of his internal exile and become the star he wasn’t sure he wanted to be.”
artnet 2008

“Sculptures dwelling on the hazy territory between religious fervor and scientific exploration…Materials tend toward the anti-aesthetic: steel, plastic, and plywood. It’s all very ‘X-Files,’ in a good way.”
The New Yorker 1998

“Estenger is trying to show the effects of techno-economic power and its ideological fallout on consciousness as somehow equated with the signifying role of abstract painting. The works are frankly gruesome and provide a lengthy stretch from the more ingenious exploration into the formal basis of these ideologies, as shown in Civilization.”
Review 1998

“Max Estenger might be the exception. His New York exhibitions have been heavily reviewed, and he is known as something of an organizer in the New York scene. Much of his work has dealt with very intellectualized concerns over the fate of abstract painting, but he also knows how to hit hot buttons with his overtly cool work.”
The Dallas Morning News 1998

“The show represented a real breakthrough for Estenger…here, by playing with scale and caring little about whether a work constitutes a “painting” or not, he has opened up his project considerably.”
Artforum 1997

“In this show, Estenger treats space not as a void but as a gas. As something you breathe, something that can be manipulated with materials or machines… (in) Perfect Day a part of the room has been sealed off with wood studs and sheets of clear plastic. Of course nobody in that narrow space can breathe for very long.”
artnet 1997

“Max Estenger’s constructed paintings reduce the surface into a series of connected nodular and spatial planes, some of which are defined symmetrically using the stretcher bars as ‘windows’ in order to cite the support of the wall—the transcendental signified—in relation to a defined rectangular form/space. These tough, but delicately poised rectangular frames are covered with translucent material, thus allowing the square to sustain an equilibrium at either end of the upper and lower frames.”
Tema Celeste 1992