25

FRIDAY

At first glance, it seams Sean Scully is getting an awful lot of mileage out of a bunch of bricks. The Irish painter’s “Wall of Light” series, currently on view at the Phillips Collection, was inspired by the rough-hewn stone walls he saw throughout his travels in early-’80s Mexico. The abstract compositions of horizontal and vertical blocks recall the dizzying patterns of old brick sidewalks. Spend enough time looking at these canvases, however, and you’ll realize an ironic twist on the series name: Scully uses the blocks to create expansive landscapes through the evocative use of color—grays and blues to suggest the densely packed streets of New York’s Chelsea neighborhood, hot oranges and browns with sizzles of red in between to generate the heat of the Yucatán Peninsula, browns and greens to create the rural landscape of Mooseurach, Germany, where he spends part of each year. “Each day is a short life,” reads one text panel; each painting is a small environment. The show is on view from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (to Jan. 8, 2006; see City List for other dates) at the Phillips Collection, 1600 21st St. NW. $9. (202) 387-2151. (Hetty Lipscomb)