During the 1920s, Russian artist Vassily Kandinsky was amongst the few still clinging to a spiritual vision of art. All around him, the fascination was with primitivism, science, psychology, and populist ideals. Kandinsky, however, was neither a cubist nor a constructivist, though he ran along-side both with his colorful abstract paintings.

Today, spiritualism in the arts stands at the door of the blue-chip galleries and declares their liberal pretensions obsolete.

The Chilean-born, Brooklyn-based Tomas Ives is not the leader of this outsider movement (who knows who that might be?), but his work flirts with many of the mediums where spiritualism, anarchy, and conspiracy have flourished: street art, comics, t-shirts and posters.

Ives recently erected a window-front installation at the Williamsburg alt-comix shop, Desert Island (540 Metropolitan Ave.), where a mix of low-brow fangoria, campy esoterica, and vibrant colors make the display something of a comic-geek version of Matisse’s cut-out murals.

Elsewhere, Ives makes videos, does graphic design for magazines and books, and creates screen-prints, all in the flat cubist-pop style of ’50s designer Jim Flora, albeit with influences as far-reaching as South American folk-art, Indonesian shadow puppets, and ’60s hot rod decals.

Alas, Ives’ ability to create works outside the realm of commissions brings to mind another recent exhibit: that of Andrea Dezso, whose late winter show at the Nancy Margolis Gallery abstracted her own 2D illustrative style to create something even more whimsical and free than the many fantasy books she’s etched in the past. In both Dezso and Ives, the elements of their visual concoctions are recognizable, even if the worlds feel foreign and new. (Brian Chidester)

Tomas Ives' new window display at the Desert Island Comic Shop in Williamsburg.

Tomas Ives’ new window display at the Desert Island Comic Shop in Williamsburg.

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