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Posted inArt

Automatic Transmission: Drawing Surrealism

Surreal. It’s one of those words like insane or awesome that’s taken a beating from aggressive misuse. I’ve heard the term applied to both a bus driver wearing a funny hat and the sight of the second plane hitting the tower. “It was so surreal,” that long e sung out like an animal’s cry of distress, is one of the more commonplace characterizations of any even vaguely untypical experience. The show currently at the Morgan Library and Museum, Drawing Surrealism, affords an opportunity to get reacquainted with the ideas and art behind the now overly familiar adjective.

Posted inArt

The Precious Gems Art History Forgot

Imagine strolling through clean, bright halls, surrounded by immaculate display cases filled with baubles and trinkets, the steam-polished precious metals and gems coruscating in the glare of spotlights. Hear your feet clacking on the white floors, stopping to look closer at the jewelry on display, but not close enough to stir the ire of the security guard peering over your shoulder. Imagine wanting everything you see, from diamond diadems to neon-tubed necklaces. No, you’re not in Tiffany’s or Cartier, you’re in the Museum of Arts and Design, gazing at their new show, Picasso to Koons: The Artist as Jeweler.

Posted inArt

A Perceptual Dance Party for Your Eyes

Abstraction is a fickle shapeshifter. Outlines of horses and bulls in caves and geometric markings on ceramic flatware were the earliest embodiment of the craft. Since then, abstraction has travelled through an unbelievable number of incarnations. James McCoy Gallery recently took on the challenge of presenting a hiccup’s worth of abstraction from the 20th Century, anticlimactically titled 70 Years of Abstract Painting: Excerpts. The showing was based on the gallery’s strong holding of abstract art, looking to “initiate an unusual dialogue” between past and present.

Posted inArt

Performance Art Through the Lens

MoMA photography curator Roxana Marcoci knows that we are experiencing a “renaissance of performance”. The show she has curated in collaboration with Eva Respini, Staging Action: Performance in Photography since 1960, will explore the role of the photographic image in this surge of performative work, both as a document of the performance and as art work on its own. The MoMA exhibition, which opens this Friday January 28, begins in the 1960s at a time when performance began to emerge as a singular field of art based on the carrying out of specific art actions.

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