Tag Archives: style

Jenny Saville: ‘Humans Are Just Drawn to Eyes’

Jenny Saville speaks in all the quotes here. Italy is a country of figuration, so I feel very at home here — but it was intimidating. I got through by really looking at Michelangelo… I started to do direct studies … Continue reading

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‘A Gloriously Unsatisfied Painter’

Brobdingnagian ocular hubbub. Colossus of hue and scream. Tympanic boom. These phrases leapt to mind — of course they did! — as I eyed Sarah Cain’s work. Confession though: Cain owns me for rejecting the term “murals” in favor of … Continue reading

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“I’m Trying to Overwhelm the Museum,” He Said

[Adam] Pendleton, 37, is best known as a painter of abstract canvases in a distinctive black-and-white style that challenge how we read language. Made using spray-paint, brush and silk-screen processes, they incorporate photocopied text, words unmoored from context, letters scrambled … Continue reading

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Jane Kaufman

The savory quotation that leaps from this obituary of artist Jane Kaufman (1938 – 2021) is from Holland Cotter’s review of a 2008 retrospective at the Hudson River Museum in Yonkers, N.Y. “It’s funky, funny, fussy, perverse, obsessive, riotous, accumulative, … Continue reading

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Pausing to Remark

A former associate stumbled upon this blog recently and wrote to me. She had read some older posts in which I challenged certain language practice encountered in published articles. It’s true I experimented for a time with adopting the persona … Continue reading

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‘Art Has Many Mansions’

The NYTimes, as well, has sumptuous reportage on this exhibit of Medici-sponsored artworks. The portraits have a preternatural technical brilliance that’s otherworldly. “Laura Battiferri,” fingering her legible volume of Petrarch, is a creature contrived from mannerist lunacy. An interesting wrinkle … Continue reading

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How to Act

“You talk and I listen; then I talk and you listen. That’s how it works.” (90-year-old actor Robert Duvall on the art of acting, interviewed by Stephen Colbert, June 2021) Duvall’s peer Clint Eastwood is credited with expressing his technique … Continue reading

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Slant-Wise Talk

Saying things that are graspably cockeyed is my kind of self-expression. Doing so skirts peekaboo obscurity and affectation constantly, but sometimes it feels like it’s working and those moments make me feel interesting. “Even your most serious problem,” [Stephen Dunn] … Continue reading

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On Edges and Errors

Two descriptions in this article about Cézanne are helpful for me. One concerns Camille Pissarro’s treatment of edges: Pissarro was the subtlest of the leading Impressionists, devising ways of giving distinctive presence to each part of a painting, by, for … Continue reading

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Robert Hollander: Scholar-Translator

Robert Hollander, Princeton Dante scholar and translator, died in April, 2021. The translation of “The Divine Comedy” which he produced in close collaboration with wife Jean Hollander (d. 2019), herself a poet, is said to be among the “smoothest” and … Continue reading

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