Paul Corio reviews the recent exhibition To Leo, A Tribute from American Abstract Artists at Sideshow Gallery, Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Corio writes: "The big story in the New York art world for well over a year now is the broad reemergence of abstract painting... One of the many things that I like about abstraction’s current airing is that there are many, many serious people who have been quietly toiling in their studios with only modest recognition for years as the partisans of critical theory stood outside the window and threw rocks. Many of these artists are getting a fresh look, and it’s well deserved. Quite a few belong to American Abstract Artists, an association established in 1936 and dedicated to the advancement of abstract art – a mission which has not always been an easy one. Their recent group exhibition at Sideshow Gallery in Brooklyn, NY, was titled “To Leo, A Tribute,” and was organized as a kind of thank you note to AAA artist and past president Leo Rabkin. The nonagenarian Rabkin led the AAA for fourteen years starting in 1964, into the post-modern era and through the supposed collapse of painting, abstract and otherwise. He never lost faith in the endeavor during the darkest moments, and this tribute seems particularly fitting as abstraction takes its current star turn."