May 2010

The West's Last Sacrilege?

MOST LIKELY, YOU HAVE READ ALL ABOUT the recent theft of five big-ticket paintings from the Paris Museum of Modern Art. If not, you can catch up here.  And here. Britain’s Daily Mail does well with this sort of thing. Lots of pictures. Its online edition is one of the few sites that illustrated each of the paintings stolen: Picasso’s Pigeon with Peas, Matisse’s Le Pastorale, Braque’s Olive Tree Near Estaque, Modigliani’s Woman With a Fan and Still Life with Chandelier by Leger. Continue Reading
Whose Kid is Tucker Nichols?

SO WHO IS TUCKER NICHOLS? Whose kid is he? That was my first thought when I saw the name on an oversized, electric red envelope in the mailbox. At quick glance, it looked hand-addressed—immature block lettering dotted with a blot or two. It was the kind of Magic-Markering ten-year-olds send to each other by way of party invitations. Then I turned it over and saw a gallery’s return address. The envelope unfolded into a poster announcing Nichols’ third exhibition at Ziehersmith. Continue Reading
Ross Neher: Sanctuary

Ross Neher has described himself as a practicing painter and a partisan in the rough-and-tumble New York art world. In his book, Blindfolding the Muse: the Plight of Painting in the Age of Conceptual Art (1999), he sets down valuable—and contentious—arguments in defense of the art of painting. The art, mind you; not the concept. He addressed his book to sophisticated laymen, the very audience savvy enough to know there are two art worlds. One is the self-selected circular nexus of galleries, institutions, auctions houses and press outlets that celebrate a $12 million stuffed shark or the latest banality to receive the Whitney’s Bucksbaum Award. Continue Reading
Sacred vs. Religious Art

Michael Quenot, an authority on the art and Orthodox theology of icons, insists on the primacy of two dimensional images in the visual expression of religious conviction. In The Icon: Window on the Kingdom, he wrote that the two-dimensional iconographic image is “more accessible to mystery.” It is an irritating point to anyone who marvels at the possibility, attested to by modern physics, that we live in ten, possibly eleven, dimensions. We experience three of them—height, length, depth—directly through our senses. Continue Reading
"The Memory Project" in Jerusalem

By Heddy Breuer Abramowitz In a welcome move for a venue-starved city, the American Culture Center, an arm of the U.S. Embassy, inaugurated the first art exhibit at its library in Jerusalem. Entitled the “Memory Project I,” artist Robin Press presented an ensemble of prints dealing with childhood memories. The opening included a talk by author Joan Leegant, visiting Writer-in-Residence of the Rudoff Graduate Program in Creative Writing at Bar Ilan University. The American-born Press is no stranger to Jerusalem, having lived here for sixteen years. Continue Reading