Cezanne’s Sensations

A 1979 article by Éric Michaud recently republished in NonSite. Michaud writes: “It would be wrong, then, to look for a rational convention in Cézanne’s painting. Émile Bernard only wanted to see in it the essence of things; [Lawrence ] Gowing saw only pure signs. But Cézanne’s painting is no more conventional than language is […]

Picasso’s Transformations
New York Review of Books

With numerous exhibitions and publications marking the fiftieth anniversary of Pablo Picasso’s death in 1973, 2023 has been a year to reconsider the most famous artist of the 20th century. Reviewing a number of these shows and books about the artist, Jed Perl laments that for all this attention and celebration, “Picasso, a titan among […]

Giacometti, Frontality and Cubism

Blog post revisiting Jonathan Silver’s 1974 article Giacometti, Frontality and Cubism. Silver writes: “I believe a fresh approach to Giacometti’s figurative style will show that its apparent reductiveness—the insistence on frontality, the prevailing monochrome of the paintings and the attenuation of the sculptured figures—represents the common ground between contending aims and mutually limiting conditions in […]

Death, Destruction and Deity: Painting Guernica
The Art Newspaper

Gijs van Hensbergen considers a panoply of sources and influences on Picasso’s Guernica (1937) on the occasion of the exhibition Pity and Terror: Picasso’s Path to Guernica at Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, on view through September 4, 2017. Hensbergen writes: “Picasso’s magpie instinct and voracious visual memory is legendary but there is […]

Florine Stettheimer: Feminist Provocateur

Barbara Bloemink considers painter Florine Stettheimer’s important, but often overlooked, contributions as a feminist. Bloemink writes: “Stettheimer never painted ‘fantasies’ — her works are all based on factual, thoroughly researched details — and her style and subject matter were carefully chosen. She prophetically chose to portray unique subjects, including race, sexual orientation, gender, and religion, in […]

Rhetorical Abstraction in the Age of the Incidental Viewer

Gwenaël Kerlidou reflects on the work of Frank Stella. Kerlidou writes: “Stella’s main argument boils down to this: How to make paintings that don’t lose the status of paintings by becoming objects — paintings that evacuate the subjectivity of both the painter and the viewer, and replace it with historical necessity? But, by rejecting expression, […]

Lourdes Bernard on Pieter Bruegel
Painters on Paintings

Lourdes Bernard writes about Peter Bruegel’s Wine of St. Martin’s Feast Day (1566 – 1567).Bernard observes: “The painting’s unique composition is a departure from the other paintings by Bruegel. For example, in the Procession to Calvary, the landscape dominates the painting and acts as a container for the multiple dramas that unfold. In Wine of […]

Picasso and the Fall of Europe
London Review of Books

T.J. Clark reflects on Picasso's mural Fall of Icarus (1958). Clark writes: "My argument, then, is that it was only in the real-size, forty-piece Fall of Icarus that Picasso escaped from Cubism – from the studio, from ‘viewpoint,’ from proximity and tactility, from the whole spatial and figurative world of Guernica – and showed us […]

Gregory Amenoff on Pieter Bruegel
Painters on Paintings

Gregory Amenoff considers the cycle of seasons paintings by Pieter Bruegel. Amenoff writes: “In his Seasons cycle, Bruegel lifts much from [Joachim] Patinir structurally and stylistically, but he does something radical and distinct from his predecessor by animating his figures only according to the reality of the seasonal condition in which they appear. The characters […]

Discovering Milton Resnick

John Skoyles blogs about Milton Resnick: Painter in the Age of Painting, Geoffrey Dorfman’s new manuscript about New York School painter Milton Resnick. Skoyles writes: “The narrative contains transcriptions of interviews about the lives of artists of that period. Dorfman’s and Resnick’s sensibilities complement each other perfectly. As Dorfman notes, ‘There are two voices running […]

Simon Ling: Urban Plein-air
Frieze Magazine

Josephine New writes about the paintings of Simon Ling. New observers: “At the heart of Ling’s practice are two preoccupations. Firstly, his fascination with making ‘something’ (a painting) out of ‘nothing’ (a uniformly overlooked corner of an urban housing estate, say). Secondly, perhaps more significant, is the understanding that the imagination is partnered with the […]

Françoise Gilot on Matisse
Tate Blog

Françoise Gilot shares her memories of traveling with Picasso to meet Matisse. Gilot remarks: “What drew me to Matisse is his desire for finding the strongest and most simple way of expressing a form or character. And also in terms of… mounting the color to the extreme… The difference between Matisse and Picasso is Picasso […]

Cubism, Technology & Abstraction
Henri Art Magazine

In part two of his series of essays titled Untethered (part one is here), Mark Stone looks back to how the cubism of Picasso and Braque paved the way for abstraction by creating an art that could bridge the history of painting and the rapid technological advancement of the early 20th century. Stone writes: “Abstraction as […]

Milton Resnick: 3 Poems
Poems and Poetics

Jerome Rothenberg writes about Milton Resnick’s poetry and posts three unpublished poems by the painter. Rothenberg also writes that “Resnick was a very visible & dynamic artist when we met him in the early 1960s, but beyond that he was also a persistent practitioner of poetry, less in a public sense than as a release […]

Painting How You Feel, Not How You Should
Painter's Bread

Michael Rutherford writes about a selection of painters whose instincts are leading them to make work beyond the limits of "the plane." Rutherford writes: "Professional skateboarders have a saying, 'skate how you feel, not how you should,' and the most experimental and engaging artists have always operated just like that – working how they feel, […]

On Michael Goldberg’s Sardines
Eye Level

Howard Kaplan blogs about Michael Goldberg’s painting Sardines (1955), the inspiration for Frank O’Hara’s poem Why I Am Not a Painter, which documents the painting’s progress. Kaplan writes: “O’Hara was a very generous friend. He was particularly giving to his painter friends, including Goldberg, in looking at their work and responding to it. Joe LeSueur in […]

Bruegel’s Islands of Consciousness
Rebecca Harp

Inspired by a visit to the Capodimonte Museum in Naples, Rebecca Harp muses on the paintings of Bruegel. Harp writes: ” I am not sure if there is anything quite like coming across a Bruegel painting when visiting a museum, being both very poignant and invigorating for the eye and mind at the same time. […]

Filming Bruegel
The Artblog

Andrea Kirsh reviews Lech Majewski’s The Mill and the Cross, a new biogrphical film about the artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder. Kirsh writes that “Majewski captures Bruegel’s truth that great events occur amidst the shapeless narrative of everyday life. Just as remarkable is the effect he creates of taking us into the actual space of […]

Head in the Clouds
Slate Arts

Slate’s Christopher Benfey considers Constable’s cloud paintings and the artist’s possible motivations for painting them. Benfey writes: “They seem, in fact, to register quite distinct aesthetic programs, as though what Constable is classifying isn’t clouds at all, but rather whole schools of painting, along with their dominant moods. The best analogy may be Chopin’s Etudes, […]