October 23, 1988 |
The first thing one should understand about "The Figurative Fifties," the new exhibition at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, is that contrary to the implications of its catchy title, it's a tightly focused examination of a particular situation in a specific place. "The Figurative Fifties" is not a definitive examination of figurative painting during the 1950s, nor even of American figurative painting, nor even - and this is where one really begins to split hairs - of figurative painting in New York, which by 1950 had clearly become the center of the American art world.
October 8, 1991 |
What parent among us, on seeing how readily our children take to drawing, hasn't wondered whether perhaps we were harboring a budding Rembrandt or O'Keeffe? I remember my own musings when our daughter, Rachel, at about 3 spontaneously switched from what she called "scribble-scrabble" to recognizable shapes. From abstract doodling to representation - what a clever child! Then I saw the similar work her nursery school mates were turning out and realized I was observing a universal process of human development.
September 21, 1989 |
Fall is traditionally the time when Hollywood gets serious, releasing those intellectual, personal films that would get stomped on in the summer when everyone is out of school and lining up to see Batman. But after listening to studio publicists hail this season's slate and reading up on all the available press gush, you have to ask: "Are they serious? Granted, you can't always judge a film by its advance notices, but there sure do seem to be a lot of stiffs coming up. Starting around Thanksgiving, however, the holiday season looks to again provide a glut of films to run away with next year's Oscars.