Saturday, January 10, 2009

Stop reading this and go to the St. Louis Art Museum

I admit I don't know a lot about art history, techniques, or methods...so if you do, forgive my naivete. Last night we went to the St. Louis Art Museum's exhibit: "Action-Abstraction: Pollock, de Kooning and American Art, 1940–1976" This is the last weekend for the exhibit, so if you have time make your way over there. According to the printed materials, this is the first exhibit in 20 years to examine the Abstract movement and the period that followed.

Interestingly, the exhibit is portrayed through the perspective of two rivals in art criticism, Clement Greenberg and Harold Rosenberg. About 50 pieces from major collections throughout the world have been brought together. You'll see works from Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler, Arshile Gorky, Philip Guston, Hans Hofmann, Jasper Johns, Ad Reinhardt, David Smith, Frank Stella and Clyfford Still. Paintings and sculpture are displayed that changed the art world from representational to abstraction.

Contemporary magazines, newspaper, and filmed interviews are also part of the exhibit and help define how truly extraordinary and revolutionary these works were at the time. The role art critics Greenberg and Rosenberg played in getting the largely American movement recognized is also integral to the exhibition. Greenberg championed the purity of abstract art. Rosenberg the action side of creating abstract art.

Admission is $6 and includes an iPod media tour.

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