There's nothing new about freeing painting from representation, but harder is to free paint itself—the fluid, sticky stuff we daub and brush on canvas—from its instrumental role. Paint is merely a medium, a tool, not an entity of its own. But then you see it differently in Margie Livingston's Paint Objects. Here she's poured the acrylic goo into molds, having stirred different hues into a psychedelic mix, and allowed it to harden into solid form. Some pieces are then neatly planed and sectioned like laminated planks of wood; other strips are folded or knotted like ribbons. My favorite is almost a quilt: 90 polychromatic tiles hung on the wall, each square like a Rorschach test with squiggles and paisley swirls. The colors are grouped into families or affinities, something like the periodic table; yet each 8" x 8" tile has its own inter- mingled hues and a shale-like texture. They're like sections of rock, sliced and quarried from some Dr. Seuss planet, congealed from a core of molten candy. Whatever the conceptual intent, Livingston sees a "dumb, empty, easy, unjustifiable beauty" in what were originally just accidental spatters in her studio. In a sense, she's now formalized the old messy byproducts of her art, and annealed them into a lovely grid.