Friday, October 05, 2007

a MoMA response

While Richard Serra was blocking 6th Avenue yesterday, and another "big" show was being installed at the Modern, I was left with more time to ponder the permanent collection. Seemed like they might have had out a couple of extra Gorky's and DeKooning's out, being concious of both the presentation (last night) of "The Collector" (a documentary about Allan Stone, as well as the upcoming Christie's auction of a large part of his collection), in addition to the scheduled show of DeKooning drawings at Allan Stone Gallery.

There was an interesting (although not exceptional) installation of minimalist drawings. Sketches from minimalists fall a bit short esthetically, but I think that was part of the point.

Keeping the abstract expressionists in the regular/permanent collection in mind, contrasted by the minimalist show, I mannically scribbled down a bunch of notes in my sketch book. Here they are...

reconciling the (stupid) animosity of the early minimalists against the abstract expressionists.
both have repetition and imperfection
abstract expressionist (specifically Pollack) seem initially unordered, but it's easy to see a rhythm and fractal geometry explains the non-periodic order (chaos) that exists, perhaps as a result of the limits of the human body.
the minimalist directive to remove the artist's expression, by creating repetitive sanitary marks and put the expression (burden or privledge?) onto the viewer. Yet they fail to remove all trace of the artist; at the very least some kind of intention remains, even if only the will to creat; and very often the artist's hand is revealed in the imprefections of the work (something I addressed in the changing block print pieces from 5 years ago).
Minimalism and Abastract Expressionism are arguing siblings.

Does the repetition have to be contained in the same work or can it be a repetition throughout a body of work?

Does the repetition have to be geometric or semi-geomentric or can it be more organic and unplanned?

I suspect that a minimalist movement was partly a reaction agains a perceived large ego fo expressionism. But, forcing an umbrella of intellectualism over expressino just shifts the source of ego, instead of getting rid of it (or supressing it)

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