Post image for Using Beauty to Examine Ugly Political Truths

Beauty has long occupied an inferior rank in the modern art world. At best, it’s deemed inconsequential — at worst, shallow. But this puritanical sentiment may be misguided, if two video works on view at the Asia Society are any indication.

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Post image for Jackson Pollock’s Renaissance Connection

FLORENCE, Italy — The city of Florence is paying homage to Jackson Pollock, well-known for his all-over syncretistic paintings, by connecting his work to that of Michelangelo’s.

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Post image for Artistic Revelations from Ancient Southeast Asia

With Lost Kingdoms: Hindu-Buddhist Sculpture of Early Southeast Asia, 5th to 8th Century, the Metropolitan Museum of Art once again proves its stature as a world-class museum — not just because of its collections, size, or location, but because it is one of the few institutions in the world that can luxuriate in mounting shows of profound global impact that are not dictated by the whims of mass popularity.

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Post image for 3D Printing Coney Island’s Bygone Electric Eden

Luna Park at Coney Island was an “electric Eden” of spindly towers and ornate architecture laced with some 250,000 lights. The amusement park was closed in 1944 after a catastrophic fire, and mostly photographs remain. To recapture some of the lost wonder, artist Fred Kahl is building a 3D-printed facsimile of Luna Park in miniature.

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Post image for The Provincialism of Sigmar Polke

The Museum of Modern Art’s current offerings include, just possibly, the world’s most brilliant student of a certain kind of art. The student would be the German postmodernist Sigmar Polke (1941–2010), and the work in question would be pieces dating from after approximately 1960, when art was turning away from a belief in the power of expression to examinations of that expression, and in fact of the entire role of art.

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Jon Imber: Tangled Up in Hues

by Carl Little on June 29, 2014

Post image for Jon Imber: Tangled Up in Hues

ROCKPORT, Maine — It’s a late, sunny Wednesday afternoon in mid-June at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art (CMCA) and, aside from a docent at the front desk, I have the whole Jon Imber: Force of Nature show to myself.

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Post image for Postscript to the Whitney Biennial: An Asian-American Perspective

Now that the Whitney Biennial is finally over, did anyone notice that Patty Chang, Nikki S. Lee, and Laurel Nakadate weren’t included, just to mention three mid-career, Asian-American women artists who were conspicuously absent?

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Post image for In ‘Self-Taught Genius,’ a History of Label-Teasing Art Forms

In 1964, Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart famously noted, with regard to what exactly constituted “obscenity,” “I know it when I see it.” Similarly, among some art historians, collectors and other experts, just what can or should be considered “folk art” often has been a subject of criteria-questioning debate.

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Post image for Have a Nice Day: Jeff Koons and the End of Art

Gleaming in the ghost-light of fluorescent tubes, the vitrine-encased vacuum cleaners that open the Whitney Museum’s Jeff Koons retrospective are nothing short of spectacular. The rest of the work, however, with few exceptions, reveals itself to be as thin, puerile and derivative as the artist’s harshest critics would expect.

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Post image for The Artistic Madness of the American South

The insane, or seemingly insane, have constituted a good chunk of “outsider art” since the term’s inception, so it’s no surprise that When the Stars Begin to Fall: Imagination and the American South, now in the last week of its run at the Studio Museum in Harlem, includes a few of them.

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