a r t i c l e s

Art: A sense of the Spectacle And Its Place in Society

By Vivien Raynor, The New York Times (May 10, 1998)

a r t i c l e s

The title “Art as Spectacle” has the impact of a drum roll, and the show it announces is almost as short in duration. There is less than a week in which to observe works by 93 artists, chosen by Thelma Golden for the exhibition at the Katonah Museum of Art here.

To quote Ms. Golden, “the extraordinary, the unreal, the tragic, the beautiful and the ungraspable all contribute to the notion of the spectacle and its place in our media-saturated culture.”

Though the show’s first prize went to Barbara Ellmann for her nine-panel series of geometric encaustics, the emphasis is on representational painting. This can be serene and straightforward, like Marion Ranyak’s high-keyed “Italian Landscape,” but is more likely to be eccentric, even weird.

The images that stick in my mind are small: Mitchell Friedman’s white-on-black monograph of a naked figure swinging from a tree, which recalls a black lament about a lynching; Marcy Freedman’s checkerboard on paper, which is half-images appropriated from Leger and half-story line in the manner of Dottie Attie, and, last but not least, Peter Krusko‘s pencil drawing of what appears to be the same ominous cloudy sky over the Hudson a couple of weeks ago.

The show is called the most prestigious of its kind in the New York City area this year. What I can say is that a production that fills the Katonah Museum with a Whitney-style jauntiness is not to be missed.

All art & content on this website is copyright © 2023 Peter A. Krusko.
Website by Kate Rollins Web Design, LLC

Scroll to Top