Posted inArt

MoMA’s Show of Shows: “Inventing Abstraction, 1910–1925”

Inventing Abstraction, 1910-1925, the new exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, should be the kind of show that MoMA was made for, and it is.

Like last year’s de Kooning: A Retrospective (which could have been subtitled Deconstructing Abstraction), the new show draws on the museum’s finest tradition of world-class scholarship presented in gloriously visual terms.

Posted inArt

Beware the Tragic Sublime

My first exposure to Eugène Leroy’s (1910–2000) work goes back to 1973: a small group in just as small a storefront in an eighteenth-century Flemish baroque-style building close to the historical center of Lille, a city on the French/Belgian border. I only went to see the show — mostly Flemish regional artists all of the same generation — at the insistence of some of my beaux-arts student friends. We stood in silence in front of a medium size painting by Leroy, trying to make sense of the profligacy of paint in front of us when we could barely afford the few tubes of oil paint we needed for our studies.