By John Thomason
By Benjy Caplan
By Artburst Miami
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Daniel Reskin
Cassie's chosen titles illuminate the origin of the works. The paintings are named after hurricanes that struck Florida and Texas during years in which Muhammad Ali either fought matches in those states, received a suspension, or regained his license. Other works share the names of storms that hit either during the year boxer Rubin "Hurricane" Carter terminated his career or the year of his release from jail. This is quite a macho subtext for rather feminine paintings.
The artist draws parallels between the pugilist's inclination toward violence within the acceptable parameters of sport -- in the boxing ring, a square -- and the destruction unfurled by a storm as it ravages the earth's surface -- on canvas, also a square. Cassie echoes a storm system filled with moisture, using skeins of thin, glossy enamel to indicate rapid, fluid movement. The eyes of the storm are painted on the surface of four works, Beulah, Isabel, Fern, and Gloria, markings that resemble aggressively planted lipstick smudges. The viewer's eye attempts to penetrate the density of the picture plane, but is ultimately obstructed. The feverish aerial views are equal parts Fight Club and ice-cream sundae, whether or not they make reference to storms or boxers.
A polyglot artist whose previous works include photography, drawing, and sculpture with a variety materials -- from sugar cubes to insulation slabs to cast resin -- Cassie remains ever attentive to the subtle relationships among perception, conception, and presentation. The paintings featured in "Eyewall" exert an energetic presence that is analogous to both the boxer and the storm.
Also showing at Ingalls & Associates is "Dark Match," a series of video stills by Damian Rojo that explores the radical chic of boxing.