Report from the Front

Art criticism, sometimes with context, occasional politics. Published in hard copy 5-7 times a year. New shows: "events;" hard-copy rates & how to support the online edition: "works."

"YOUTH & BEAUTY" IN BROOKLYN

December 29, 2011

Tags: George Ault

George Copeland Ault (American, 1891-1948). Brooklyn Ice house, 1926. Oil on canvas. 24 x 30 in. (61 X 76.2 CM). Newark Museum, Purchase 1928 The General Fund

Nevertheless, the Met’s Stieglitz show (reviewed below) is a masterpiece of modernism by comparison with the second big show at the Brooklyn Museum just now, “Youth and Beauty: Art of the American Twenties” (through January 29; thereafter at the Dallas Museum of Art, March 4 through May 27, 2012, and the (more…)

GLORIES OF THE MET

December 24, 2011

Tags: Alfred Stieglitz, 'Abd-al-Samad

'Abd-al-Samad. Two Fighting Camels. Mughal Court at Fatehpur Sikri or Lahore. Ca. 1590. Opaque watercolor and ink on paper. 7 3/8 x 8 1/16 inches (18.8 x 20.5 cm). Private Collection
At the moment, The Metropolitan Museum of Art is glorying in the more sedate forms of postmodernism. No fun & games, no fashion shows, but rather a marked concentration on non-Western art—which can be great art, I don’t deny that, but it’s also frightfully politically correct, the sort of art (more…)

BEAUTY IN BOSTON

December 22, 2011

Tags: Degas

After the Bath, Woman Drying Her Neck, 1886-95. Edgar Degas (French, 1834-1917). Pastel on wove paper. *Paris, Musee d'Orsay, bequest of comte Isaac de Camondo, 1911. * (c) Photo Musee d'Orsay/rmn. *Courtesy, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Beantown is fortunate. At the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, is “Degas and the Nude,” curated by George T. M. Shackelford, of the Boston museum, and Xavier Ray, of the Musée d’Orsay. This many-splendored exhibition features 160 works (140 of them by Degas), including paintings, pastels, drawings, monotypes, etchings, lithographs and (more…)

UP, UP & AWAY

December 5, 2011

Tags: Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas. Red Marina (sketch). 1972, Magna acrylic, 10 3/4 x 9 3/4 inches.
Currently at Loretta Howard are two shows: “Arrested Motion: Friedel Dzubas 1961-1971," and "Roberto Caracciolo: Seeing Red, A Decade of Work," (both here through December 23). The Caracciolo (on the upper level of the gallery) didn't prompt me to write about it. The Dzubas show, on the other hand, (more…)

FIVE STARS IN THE GALLERIES

December 1, 2011

Tags: Braque, Matisse, Newman, Kenneth Noland, Helen Frankenthaler

Georges Braque. Céret, Rooftops. 1911. Oil on canvas, 34 3/4 x 25 1/2 inches (88.5 x 65 cm). Private Collection. (c) Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris
If you can deal with the rarefied air north of 34th Street, four galleries on the Upper East Side have five big stars in good to great shows. Or at least in one case, had not have: I greatly regret not having gotten to “Georges Braque: Pioneer of Modernism,” curated by Dr. Dieter Buchhart (more…)