mon 14/10/2019

Abstract Expressionism

Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Barbican Theatre

Any newcomers to Merce Cunningham who visit the last performances ever in Britain of his modern dance company - renowned, even notorious, for its abstruse abstractness - will surely go away with an impression of laughter, playfulness, the lightness...

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Frank Stella: Connections, Haunch of Venison

Art about art is one of my favourite kinds of art. Paintings, drawings, sculptures, films - works of art which talk about what art is, what the image is, what art can represent and what it can't - all appeal. It is not just a picture of some...

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Twombly and Poussin: Arcadian Painters, Dulwich Picture Gallery

Twombly's 'Hero and Leandro (After Christopher Marlowe)' takes as its theme the classical legend of the doomed lovers

Some years ago the Dulwich Picture Gallery invited Howard Hodgkin to exhibit alongside the Old Masters in their collection. I am not a fan of this vastly overrated artist, but even a diehard enthusiast must have found the juxtaposition cruel. How...

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Joan Miró: The Ladder of Escape, Tate Modern

'Dog Barking at the Moon': Miró used recurring motifs in his work, including the ladder, the dog and the moon

I used to love Joan Miró. Those cute biomorphic forms; those elegantly elusive doodles; those engagingly befuddled, cartoonish faces, each staring forlornly out of the cosmic soup of Miró’s playful imagination; and, of course, those bright, jazzy...

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Peter Lanyon, Tate St Ives

A retrospective at Tate St Ives can be a poisoned chalice for the major artist. It postpones his or her prospect of a showing at Tate Britain by a couple of decades, and can appear to consign them to the comfort zone of "Cornish Art": the heritage...

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Arshile Gorky: A Retrospective, Tate Modern

Arshile Gorky found it almost impossible to finish a painting. Something would always call him back. So he would go back and would add and retouch and tinker around over several years - sometimes over the course of a decade or two. “When something...

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What Is Beauty?, BBC Two

As questions go, "What is beauty?" is quite possibly only second to "What do women want?" in the frequency of its asking and in the difficulty of its answer. As the first programme in BBC Two and BBC Four’s Modern Beauty season, What Is Beauty?...

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