My recapitulation of art history, in parts-reaction to a new show
Art didn’t begin with Picasso, or Duchamp.
If you listened to some and looked at others though, you might think so. I saw a show this week that made me think that maybe the 1970s needed to be revisited-but I can’t agree. So, I thought about some of my history.
I grew up in Los Angeles. Larry Bell’sand Laddie John Dill’s work is very familiar to me. I knew it, saw it first hand. So is the work of Ed Keinholz. The 1960s was an incredibly rich period in experiment and redefinition.
Painting was dead for a period, too. I think I was a sophomore, painting like I never had before. And, then that period ended, almost as quickly as it started. I never quit, but I found really “left brain” ways of painting, which also satisfied the norm to justify why I liked my brushes.
Once painting was “OK” again, there was a new period called “minimalism”. I loved the likes of Brice Marden. Peter Lodata was an absolute sweetheart in his cowboy boots. Yeah, I met these guys. But, the art he made was so intensely intellectual and it answered one question. One question. And, once you got it, it was time to move on.
James Haywood’s minimalism changed with light, but a piece needed to be placed in just the right place…
But, the mid 70’s signaled another social change . And, as I had figured out minimalism, from there I got pattern-painting, a new style-shift.
Pattern painting justified by great poetic waxing of figure-ground ambiguity continued for a number of years, and some of my artistic statements are so textbook, though I never used one.
To be continued…