Thursday, August 06, 2009

A group show on W20th

I went to an opening at Jonathan Levine. A light-hearted group exhibit of what I assume to be mostly extremely young artists. Their imagery is largely rooted in comics or typical of the elaborate mental fantasy doodling that they will eventually shed like molting skin as they age.

There were a number of paintings that featured cutesy/uneasy human/animal combos. Yawn.

There were a number of paintings that are based on photorealism. Pretty, but…yawn.

Three noteworthies:

Nicola Verlato combines the two themes that preoccupy the young artists: critters and comics in a masterful painting that has good light and motion, or maybe I’m just a sucker for a Sam Browne belt over rippling muscles.

Anthony Lister seemed to channel Francis Bacon.

Cleon Peterson is responsible for my favorite in this show because his three pics made me laugh. This is what the Vivian Girls would look like if they had been allowed to grow up. (The artist is in California so I could not ask him if he was indeed doing Darger but I can’t imagine that he’d deny it.)

When you see paintings by young artists, you can almost feel their hormones mixed into the paint. So much desire to say something and yet so little to say. This, incidentally, is why I hate Mozart. (Oh, go right ahead, and rage, you Mozart lovers. I’ve tried to like him. His music is heartless wallpaper.)


JC said...

Thanks for the review! But oh dear, Father Tony! I usually find you most insightful, but I must disagree about Mozart. For every hormonal "Voi che sapete" you can find a "Dove sono i bei momenti". Don Giovanni in particular sticks in my mind as more mature, but you can find good stuff in Cosi fan tutte, Le Nozze di Figaro, and other operas. And then there is the Requiem.

Tony Adams said...

As I said, JC, I have tried to like Mozart because many people whose opinions I value like him, but every draw from that well comes up dry for me. It all seems jittery and like math with no purpose - equations that explain nothing elegant. And it's not for lack of exposure to the pieces you mention. In life, one can barely escape him on the car radio and in public conveyances.

Spouse Walker said...

FT: go to youtube and type in andrea bocelli canto della terra. It is my favorite youtube music to date.

Tony Adams said...

Dear ewe,
I went to it.
It is wonderful.
Your stock has soared.