Can We Do Something About This?

by John Yau on January 28, 2012

Installation view of June Leaf's "Recent Work" show at the Edward Thorp Gallery (all images courtesy the gallery)

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the extraordinary June Leaf show before it closes at the Edward Thorp Gallery on February 4, 2012.

June Leaf, "Figure With an Angel" (2010-2011)

June Leaf was born in Chicago in 1929 and is a member of the Over Eighty Club. She had her first solo exhibition at the Sam Bordelon Gallery in Chicago in 1948, and has shown her work regularly since then—a period of nearly sixty-five years. Her recent paintings and sculpture show no evidence of decline. In fact, she’s doing some of the best work of her life.

I interviewed her for the Brooklyn Rail, and I reviewed her last show at Edward Thorp. I first wrote about her for Arts Magazine in November 1991, when Barry Schwabsky was the editor. I believe this qualifies me as a member of The June Leaf Fan Club.

Do you think petitions work?

Does anyone know if New York’s Museum of Modern Art owns a single painting, sculpture or drawing by June Leaf?  Have they ever included her work in a group show? What about the Whitney Museum of American Art or the Guggenheim?

If not, do you think that we could collect one thousand signatures and send them to the proper authorities?

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  • Sign me up.  A search of the MOMA collection has only one hit — in 1975,  a piece by June was sold in a fundraiser by the art rental service. I believe that everything finds its own level,  but this is ridiculous.

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