Tag Archives: Greenberg

All-overness

Greenberg had this to say about what he regarded as Pollock’s major achievement: “It wasn’t the space. I think the shallow illusion of depth had Cubist antecedents, and of course there was Miró’s indeterminate space. When Bryan Robertson writes about … Continue reading

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Wilhelm Worringer

Recently I put up a post on Wilhelm Worringer’s classic book, Abstraction and Empathy. It worked off an earlier post about Michel Serres, but I didn’t give it much importance; it was something of a placeholder. But as Mr. Waller … Continue reading

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Taste

One may or may not like Clement Greenberg, but to my ears the following remark contains a lot of sense: “…most of the genuinely original painting of the last century and a half has struck standard good taste, on first … Continue reading

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Conceptual Antagonist

The following remarks by Clement Greenberg, from 1971, give the most astute definition of conceptualism, or at least of the kind of conceptualism worth paying attention to: “…art, put to the strictest test of experience, proves to mean not skillful … Continue reading

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Is Painting Dead? Or Sculpture?

The preceding post weighed in with a few tons of metal—maybe too much of Stella’s sculpture all at once. But the ideas are not new to this blog. I’ve already mentioned Stephen Melville’s argument that sculpture has been liquidated between … Continue reading

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Questionable or Not

On the British web site abstract critical there is more debate about Frank Stella. I’m on his side but most aren’t. Much of the criticism seems to be based on a perception that the work does not hold together formally—the … Continue reading

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The Theater of Art

Both Scott Lyall and David Court have some skepticism about the concept of theatricality, probably because of the too heavy presence of Michael Fried in that discussion so far, so I thought it might be a good idea to take … Continue reading

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Time and Space

Spent an enjoyable afternoon with Josh Thorpe, an excellent artist with very good ideas about the relative value of experience and theory.  He recently published a guide book to Dan Graham’s pavilions, which also contains an interview with the artist. … Continue reading

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The Literary Forms of Abstraction

Which is more fundamental, visual experience or the forms of abstraction? As discussed in the previous post, form does not necessarily mean shapes in a picture, rather I’m talking about the form of the tableau, the form of the open … Continue reading

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Olitski Part 2

Following from the preceding post, the sublimation of cubism and color field into something new would be a good description of my own work, though in that case the “new” is a stance toward nature embodied in the method, so … Continue reading

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Critical Shibboleths

The thoughts on this blog are getting complex because there are simultaneous independent lines of inquiry. I want to continue with my attempt to show the extent to which “objective” illusions are produced by desire and sustained by knowledge. I … Continue reading

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Olitski

Shep Steiner’s discussion of Olitski’s pictures is, as usual with him, a very close reading. He bears down on minute variabilities in the works, and tracks his own reactions. His descriptions of the work are astonishing, inspiring for an artist, … Continue reading

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Opticality of Sculpture

Shep Steiner has just sent me his chapter on Olitski, and, as usual, his observations are inspiring and very original. He says that Michael Fried has it that Greenberg’s remarks on the opticality of sculpture, referred to in an earlier … Continue reading

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Pollock’s Place

The previous post is obviously wrong when it says that Pollock’s work was not theorized as a place. Harold Rosenberg‘s famous formulation that the so-called “action painters” had reinvented the canvas as “an arena in which to act,” describes how … Continue reading

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Fred Sandback

The surprising and dramatic retention of illusion in an art of extreme reduction is maybe best seen in the installations of Fred Sandback. Viewers routinely report the impression of a pane of glass stretched between his strings of yarn. Sandback … Continue reading

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Grids

Greenberg suggested that instead of laying paint on top of the canvas, if paint was stained into the weave the canvas itself would then become the painting, both object and image. The artists of Supports/Surfaces took that kind of thinking … Continue reading

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Perspectives on Pollock

Last week Shep Steiner sent me his latest piece on Pollock, a chapter of the book he’s working on. As always his work is really great, and it sent me back to Clark, Greenberg and others. I’m grateful to Shep … Continue reading

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