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Report from the Front

Art criticism, sometimes with context, occasional politics. Published in hard copy 2-4 times a year. New shows: "events;" hard copy rates & how to support the online edition: "works."

 

UNSLEEPING REASON: GOYA GRAPHICS AT THE MET

Goya (Francisco de Goya y Lucientes) (Spanish, 1746–1828). Plate 42 from Los Caprichos: Thou who canst not (Tu que no puedes.), 1799. Etching, burnished aquatint, Sheet 11 5/8 × 8 1/4 in. (29.5 × 21 cm); plate 8 1/2 × 5 7/8 in. (21.5 × 15 cm).The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of M.
Knoedler & Co., 1918 (18.64[42])

 

 

"There's no question in my mind but that Goya's "Third of May" is better than anything Pollock could paint," Clement Greenberg told a Bennington seminar in 1971. It's unlikely New York will get to see a full-dress retrospective of Francisco Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828) any time soon, with or without "The Third of May.".  But we do have another way of celebrating that Spanish master, with "Goya's Graphic Imagination,"  a wickedly handsome show of about 50 prints and about 50 drawings, on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art (through May 2). True, most of these works on paper are from the Met's own extensive collection, but the show also includes some memorable loans. Even more importantly, it highlights an aspect of the master that is often overlooked. Read More 

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POLITICS MEETS ESTHETICS: “PROOF” AT THE BROOKLYN MUSEUM

Robert Longo (American, born 1953). Untitled (Bullet Hole in Window, January 7, 2015), 2015—16. Charcoal on mounted paper, 76 x 143 in. (193 x 363.2 cm). © Robert Longo, Ståhl Collection Norrköping, Sweden. (Photo: Courtesy of the artist and Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac; London, Paris, Salzburg).
Am I the only person who has OD’d on politics this season? Even if you are one, too, occasionally politics and esthetics harmonize, as is (largely if not entirely) the case at The Brooklyn Museum this fall, where the show is “Proof: Francisco Goya, Sergei Eisenstein, Robert Longo” (through January 7). Read More 
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TWO GOOD REASONS TO VISIT BOSTON

Francisco Goya y Lucientes (Spanish, 1746-1828). Witches' Sabbath, 1797-1798. Oil on canvas, 43.5 x 30.5 cm (17 x 12 in.). Lent by Fundación Lázaro, Galdiano, Madrid.
In December, I visited Boston for two good reasons: to see the Goya exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts, and to see what Renzo Piano hath wrought, in his redesign of three Harvard museums. I’m sorry that I’m not reporting on my visit earlier, because the Goya show will only be  Read More 
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FOR YOUR HOLIDAY VIEWING PLEASURE...

Should you be in the mood for looking at art over the holiday weekend, here are three shows that I can highly recommend --- or rather, one show and two half-shows.

The one show that I can unqualifiedly recommend is “Jules Olitski & Anthony Caro: Making Art as Naked as Possible, 1964-1978” at  Read More 
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