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Report from the Front

Art criticism, sometimes with context, occasional politics. New shows: "events;" how to support the online edition: "works."





As some readers of this column may already have deduced, it is on an extended summer hiatus. This hiatus was only briefly interrupted when Piri Halasz gave a talk for the Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center in East Hampton on August 18. The talk seems to have gone over well (as nearly as she could tell).


On her way to the talk, she was able to stop off at the Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill, and see "Abstract Climates: Helen Frankenthaler in Provincetown" (through October 27).  She couldn't have done it without the aid of the invaluable Katie Crum, who took her around the entire show in a wheelchair.  Big thanks to Katie!  Particularly since the entire show is a treat for the eyes.  The first five of the 31 paintings on display were done in 1950-51, when Frankenthaler was still attending Hans Hofmann's art school and learning her trade, but the remaining 26 exemplify an absolutely peak period in her long and distinguished career, the late 1950s on through the 1960s. This was when she was just transitioning from her frenziedly energetic & vital Dionysian period to her more serene, detached and harmonious Apollonian one.   Piri is so glad she saw this marvelous show, and urges everybody who wants a truly beautiful and moving esthetic experience to go and see it for themselves-- all three roomy galleries of it!  


Piri is now clearing the decks for her expected knee surgery on August 26.  She doesn't know how long her rehab will take, but still plans to be back on the job again whenever in the autumn she feels entirely comfortable patrolling those hard grey pavements of New York

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