Peters employs every technique in the intuitive creation of an abstract painting — over-and -under-painting, scraping, collaging and scumbling, spattering and dripping, a variety of marks and brushstokes — and always with fluidity and fluency. This is an artist whose relationship to the painting is emotional, psychological and intimate.
Within this aura of terrific brio, the artist reveals his love of mess and clutter, of brash and disharmonious coloration. He juxtaposes ugly, garish hues and challenges us to accommodate his taste for strange inevitability; see, for example, "Unexamined Stereotypes," from 1987, and its clashing areas of scarlet and red-orange, or this year's "Universal: fundamental; depiction," with its contrasting vertical and horizontal stripes and planes of reds, blacks and yellows. The flurry and fury of the artist's gestures, the wayward splashes and splotches, the thick lines that begin nowhere and dissolve into elsewhere — all are indications of a significant confrontation with the surface of the painting and a record of a restless, curious imagination. The canvas and pigment mark the tracks of their own making.
In the past 20 or so years, at least as indicated in this exhibition, Peters' work has deepened and become more metaphysical, perhaps tinged by intimations of mortality. Not that pieces from the 21st century are not as enigmatic or hermetic as previous work; this artist has always dealt with the unreadable. A large painting like "Existence: isolation; reason," from 2005, though, seems to offer a feeling of spareness and deliberation, a sense of discretion that implies hard-won wisdom amid the throes of experience and confidence leavened by humility.