Art Museums

Review: Eyewitness Views

The Cleveland Museums of Art’s Eyewitness Views: Making History in Eighteenth-Century Europe is the best show I’ve seen at the museum since I started my near-weekly visits six years ago.  As good as the show is, however, the theme–artists as eyewitnesses to history–is a stretch.  The paintings are souvenirs of public events in (equally important)…

Destroy that painting!

At the Whitney Biennal last spring, protestors made headlines when they demanded that the museum destroy an artwork they found offensive.  The protesters didn’t want the painting removed from the Biennial, they wanted it destroyed.  The painting by Dana Schutz, Open Casket, is based on a well-known photograph of Emmett Till in his coffin. Till was an African American…

Studio journal 4/22/17

I worked on The Picnic and nothing else for the past few days. The Picnic has a painting surface that is difficult.  This doesn’t happen often anymore but it’s annoying when it does happen.  It slows everything down.  Luckily, an intermediate varnish solved the problem and things are more to my liking and moving swiftly…

I missed London’s National Gallery’s exhibit, Goya: The Portraits

I have always liked Goya. During my printmaking period, Goya’s prints were constantly before my mind. The highlight of my visit to New York’s Metropolitan last year was a Goya painting. This fall I hoped to attend London’s National Gallery’s exhibit, Goya: The Portraits. Unfortunately, I was not able to join my daughter in England where she was studying, and, so, missed the exhibition…

God Hates Renoir

I had to laugh when I read this article in the Independent.  The story is about the group calling themselves Renoir Sucks protesting in front of Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts. Renoir Sucks’ main tenant is, well, that Renoir sucks. The group maintains that they are tired of the ‘irredeemable treacle of Pierre-Auguste Renoir diluting the collection.’ They are…

Visit to Chicago Institute of Art

My wife and I spent several hours in the Art Institute on Friday. We were in Chicago for an AFHU event at the Ritz-Carlton. It was our first visit to the museum and we didn’t attempt to see everything, which is impossible in one visit. Most of our time was spent with the European collections.…

How Art Became Irrelevant

Michael J. Lewis‘ long piece in Commentary titled, How Art Became Irrelevant, is a tour de force of cultural analysis.    In his well-written and long article (did I mention it is long?), Lewis’ breadth of knowledge provides a wealth of thoughtful observations and quotable passages. To buttress his main thesis, which I think is reasonably embodied in the…

‘Works of art may be offensive”

I read this laugh-out-loud piece in the NY Times. The blog post by Jeffrey Kindley is directed toward the college-age population of delicate hothouse plants who require trigger warnings on art and other cultural artifacts.  Columbia university students who found Ovid’s Metamorphosis ‘offensive and triggering’ provide a recent example. Surrounded by Disturbing Art I was triggered…