David Carrier reviews the exhibition A Visual Essay on Gutai at Hauser & Wirth, New York, on view through October 27, 2012.
Carrier writes: "Nowadays any history of contemporary art has to be a worldwide history, looking at the contributions from every culture. It’s astonishing to look back forty-some years and find serious commentators like Michael Fried writing as if the future of painting depended just upon a few New York artists. This exhibition is a salutary reminder that historians of modernism need to expand their range of examples. Thanks to Pollock’s inspiration, the Gutai worked out quite independently in their own country something like the developments of abstraction, which took place in New York."