Gallery Going: Four Seasons in the Art World

Jed Perl, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P $24.95 (431p) ISBN 978-0-15-134260-0
Perl's straight-talking art criticism can be devastating, as when he observes that Jasper Johns's painting cycle The Seasons is ``unable to evoke four (or even two) different moods.'' Among the helium reputations he punctures are those of Andy Warhol, Frank Stella, Ken Scharf, Eric Fischl and the neo-Dada Fluxus group. Yet these pithy reviews and essays on the New York art scene (which appeared over the last four years in New Criterion , Vogue , etc.) are no mere debunking exercise. Refeshingly free of cant, the pieces reflect a critic of eclectic tastes, encompassing Hans Haacke's political protest art, Leland Bell's figurative painting, Balthus, Joseph Cornell, Louisa Matthiasdottir and Avigdor Arikha. Weighty reviews of retrospectives of Hockney, O'Keeffe, Matisse, Courbet, Gauguin and Velazquez round out an opinionated guide to the galleries. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1991
Release date: 04/01/1991
Genre: Nonfiction
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