In separate interviews, Tyler Green talks to painters Shirley Kaneda and Jonathan Lasker about the exhibition Conceptual Abstraction at Hunter College Art Galleries, New York, on view through November 10, 2012. Green begins both very interesting conversations by asking each artist the same question: "Is there a meaninful difference being an abstract painter in 1990 and in being an abstract painter in 2012?"
Kaneda begins her response: "There was a lot of re-defining and re-aligning going on in terms of abstract paintings at the time, and it seemed to be a very optimistic time... There is very little critical dialogue around abstraction today, whereas 20-25 years ago there was a lot of critical dialogue around it."
Lasker responds that he feels there is "a huge difference really. The big thing about painting is that there really haven't been a tremendous number of new issues coming forward in the last 20 years. There's been a lot of dispersion of issues, and a lot of people painting from a lot of different aspects and ideas... The last 20 years has had a lot of interesting artists, a lot of good artists, and some good young painters emerging too, but in the sense of bigger issues and big ideas, there hasn't been that much."