Jim Gaylord & Christian Maychack
Alison Bing, special to SF Gate
June, 2004

Both Bay Area artists on view at the Gregory Lind Gallery are truly multifaceted, but Christian Maychack has the term covered in both its literal and metaphorical sense. In works such as "Untitled (Eager)," Maychack sculpts such unlikely elements as leather, chicken wire, wood, acrylic paint and hot glue into spare, crystalline forms that you might expect to find inside a minimalist geode. There is a refreshing irreverence to "Untitled (Eager)": Maychack seems to have taken a too-stark Richard Serra sculpture, crumpled it, made it into a hat and hung it on the wall. On the floor nearby is "Out of the Blue," a small but impressive ice-blue glacier with a long proboscis covered in red and orange pins, as though the Arctic is undergoing acupuncture for hay fever. The overall effect is so fascinating that you'll be tempted to lie on the floor of the gallery to inspect the tip of this iceberg -- and, if you do, you'll discover a close-up panorama of unexpectedly "Titanic" proportions. Jim Gaylord's paintings are the kind of visions that arrive when you sleep a little longer than usual: vivid, frenetic, hypnotic. "Suddenly, You're Not a Person" is one such dreamscape, where upside-down beds are apparently turning into crocodiles, and a golden medieval city splits in half to reveal what looks like an igloo space station. Gaylord tempers confectionary shades of orange, pink and light blue with an ominous deep brown, giving his fairy tale a definite dark streak. Smirks and raised eyebrows seem to have fallen off the faces of cartoon characters and landed in the imploded anime landscape of "Tragic Dragon." The fleshy pink ground puckers with these expressive marks, and seems to have swallowed all of Godzilla but his tail. In the distance looms a strangely volcanic Mt. Fuji, while in the foreground we're confronted with an iconic orange Elmer's Glue cap: Pop goes the landscape. Both Gaylord and Maychack are local artists, and both do justice to the always bizarre but ever beguiling internal topography of our fair city.