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Phyllis Tuchman

Phyllis Tuchman is currently organizing, for Guild Hall's 90th anniversary, Abstract Expressionism in the Hamptons.

Art Criticism & Social Media

While art criticism languishes in the doldrums, I get my information on who to watch, what to read, must see shows, and related matters from Twitter and Facebook. These two networking services, which I consult throughout the day on my iPad and my iPhone5, have become indispensable sources of information for a variety of reasons.

Nicole Eisenman: Sturm und Drang

Sturm und Drang, a solo show from Nicole Eisenman that’s on view at The Contemporary Austin through August 16, features representative examples of her art. No matter the medium, she excels. Besides her skill at making things, she forcefully expresses herself with aplomb, conviction, empathy, bravado, and a gift for visual storytelling.

Don’t Shoot the Messenger

Laura Hoptman is an old hand at finding new talent. Time and again, Hoptman has shown that she has a good eye, a searching intelligence, and a sense of history. Years ago, during her first stint at the Museum of Modern Art, she introduced many of us to Maurizio Cattelan, John Currin, and Luc Tuymans.

Eric Fischl: Meditations on Melancholia

Because many of his figures appear in settings with backyard swimming pools or the ocean, a range of blues dominates his works. Frequently, his subjects are more memorable than his technique.

Michael Williams: Opening

Michael Williams was among the unlucky artists who had a solo show shuttered when New York went into lockdown in mid-March. On view for only two weeks, his exhibition at Gladstone Gallery in Chelsea featured 11 large paintings and five small collages. While these works are now accessible on the internet, this isn’t an ideal way to view them—partly because of the way they were made, and partly because his installation was integral to how you respond to his art.

Amy Sillman: Twice Removed

As it is, Sillman is a gamechanger. Her paintings and drawings reframe long-held notions regarding the look and emotional character of abstraction, a style that enjoyed its golden age in America a half century ago during the 1960s.

Georg Baselitz: Pivotal Turn

In 1969, Georg Baselitz, then a 31-year-old artist based in southwest Germany, began painting people, places, and things upside down. Over the course of the following decades, his art changed considerably. Nevertheless, he still inverts his subjects. This practice, coupled with existential themes, remains the hallmark of his art.

Giuseppe Penone: Leaves of Grass

Sculptures, installations, assemblages, photographs, and other works executed by Giuseppe Penone and his Arte Povera colleagues often look off-kilter and slightly madcap. Think DIY. Or picture these Italian artists, active since the late 1960s and early ’70s, stranded on a deserted island and joyously making art from found materials.

Josh Smith: Spectre

Josh Smith has done it again. With a palette favoring lilac, tangerine, lime, and citron, he has transformed a relatively bland subject into a fevered dreamscape.

Painting Pollock

Before the Internet and social media, it was easier to read about Jackson Pollock ’51 than it was to see the film Hans Namuth directed and Paul Falkenberg produced.

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The Brooklyn Rail

MAY 2021

All Issues