Tag Archives: Jackson Pollock

Art and the Inhuman

Following on from the previous post, the way that paintings overcome the necessary limits of a single work attributable to a single author is through the objectivity of the aesthetic, but this is not well understood today because both viewers … Continue reading

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Scale and Composition

Shep Steiner’s recent comment affirms that T.J.Clark’s recent LRB article on Picasso and British art is worth reading. What Clark is responding to is Picasso’s skill at scaling the image to the size of the canvas, something that all great … Continue reading

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Drawing and Writing 2

Frankenthaler’s literary interests are well known, in fact given away by the title of one of her pictures, Seven Types of Ambiguity, also the title of a book by William Empson, one of the most widely read works of literary … Continue reading

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Helen Frankenthaler

I was moved by Anne Wagner’s obituary for Helen Frankenthaler in the April 2012 issue of Artforum. Every artist has to make their own canon, never more than today, when almost all artists are educated by art historians. Frankenthaler belongs … Continue reading

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Drawing and writing

A few years ago I saw a show of Gego and the distinguished Argentine artist Leon Ferrari at MoMA. Ferrari’s work repels me—a purely instinctive reaction. Normally I might expect that feeling to reverse at some point, but in his … 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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One Number 31 1950

Reeling from the De Kooning show, I wandered downstairs in search of something different to look at and was seriously shaken by Pollock’s gigantic One Number 31. Whoever describes Pollock’s work as “flat” has no eyes or body to see … Continue reading

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Once only

There’s a lot more to say about time, and a lot that’s important for art, but I would like to talk about my kind of art. I would call it an additive tradition, running from Pollock through Frankenthaler, Louis and … 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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Rothko’s Flaw

Rothko described Pollock as a “continuous and self sustaining advertising concern.” I think he was talking about himself, because his work depends so much on the caption he provided. The flaw in Rothko’s work is that it is two things, … Continue reading

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Organicism Going Forward

I do not want to make a work that is limited by my own ability, or by the narrow compass of what I am able to comprehend on a normal day. In the era of global conceptualism this is exactly … Continue reading

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Automatism

Automatism, as I see it, is rarely practiced. The important thing is that the work should emerge out of it’s own immanent tendency. Both the ego of the artist and all teachable methods for voiding that ego are external to … 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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Echo Again

Before carrying on with the topic from the previous post I’d like to pick up an earlier thread that also links the objective matter of abstract painting with the movement of the imagination. Somehow I suspect that quotes from Harold … 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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Grids Part 5

In a recent conversation with painter Yunhee Min I was provoked to the following thought about grids: What I find most interesting in what you are saying is your use of geometry to make an origin for yourself. [referring to … Continue reading

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Diasporic modernism II

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Birds and Ornithology

According to Taleb: “The problem of knowledge is that there are many more books on birds written by ornithologists than books on birds written by birds and books on ornithologists written by birds.”

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Pollock again

The other day saw the abstract expressionist show at the AGO for the third time. As mentioned in an earlier post, Shep Steiner sent me his recent piece on Pollock, including a detailed analysis of Echo, one of the so-called … 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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Out of the container

Our knowledge of the world is like a net, the more closely woven, the more holes it has.     Robert Smithson, Non-site, 1967

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