Maureen Mullarkey

Plank Road: Group Contemporiana

ONCE UPON A TIME, culture was understood as an activity, a nexus of rituals and shared understandings, which enables us to live more fully. Now, it is just a lot of stuff for sale. Five years ago, James Salomon stepped down as director of Mary Boone Gallery to found his own shop, Salomon Contemporary Warehouse, on Plank Road in East Hampton. The business expanded to Chelsea in early 2010. Plank Road, celebrating the gallery’s fifth anniversary, offers a sampler of works from the initial stable. Continue Reading
Eric Hebborn, Exemplary Forger

ERIC HEBBORN CAME TO A HARD END, his skull mysteriously smashed in on a Roman alley in 1996. Quite possibly the world’s greatest art forger, he was the hand behind innumerable works once attributed to artists as varied as Brueghel, Piranesi, Pontormo, Corot and Augustus John, among others. Born in London,  he studied at The Royal Academy, winning every major prize available, including the Royal Academy Silver Prize, the Hacker Portrait Prize and the enviable Rome Prize. In short, he knew his stuff. Continue Reading
Bye-Bye, Picture Books?

WILL YOUR FIRSTBORN RUIN HER CHANCES of getting into Yale if she cuts her baby teeth on picture books? What good are the plastic letters on her teething ring if you let her linger with picture books? Shouldn’t she be weaned onto prose—long and winding prose—as early as possible? What future is there for a tyke whose picture book phase does not end with diapers? Should we take Herbert Kohl’s advice and burn Babar? ;; .. You have to wonder. The headline of Julie Bosman’s article in The New York Times is something of a shock: “Picture Books No Longer a Staple for Children” I had thought my years of gallery-going had made me shockproof. Continue Reading
Jerry Pinkney's Narrative Art

JERRY PINKNEY IS A NATIONAL TREASURE. At the risk of sounding hyperbolic, his children’s book illustrations offer artists more food than the ritual tours of Chelsea. Implicit in the beauty of his work (sometimes commissioned on behalf of less distinguished texts) and the decency that informs it, is more culture than in whole square blocks of any art district you can name. Artists in search of a purpose should put down Art in America or Modern Painters and get their hands on whatever they can find illustrated by Pinkney. Continue Reading
Zeroing in on Masterpieces

WITHIN THE PAST WEEK, an Italian web site posted online six glories of Renaissance painting from the Uffizi; another three from Milan, Rome and a church in the Piedmont; plus one late 19th century Italian peasant scene. As you can guess from the name of the site (Haltadefinizione), all ten can be viewed in extreme high resolution. Nearly 28 billion pixels, several thousand times greater than ordinary digital photos, permits stunning enlargement. Among featured works are: Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus; Bronzino’s Portrait of Eleonora of Toledo da Vinci’s Annunciation and The Last Supper; The Baptism of Christ by Verrocchio and da Vinci; Caravaggio’s Bacchus, and Gaudenzio Ferrari’s scene from the life of Christ from a church in the Piedmont. Continue Reading