Abstraction: Art of Another Kind

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Mario Naves reviews the exhibition Art of Another Kind: International Abstraction and the Guggenheim, 1949–1960 at The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, on view through September 12, 2012.

Naves writes: "The exhibition includes an inescapable array of artists and some stunning works. But the problem -or part of the problem – is how many of the works aren’t stunning, but merely diverting or symptomatic of the time. Art of Another Kind isn’t intended to be a definitive retrospective of an era -roughly speaking, the decade in which Abstract Expressionism achieved Grand Manner status. The curatorial focus, rather, is on one institution’s accounting of the avant-garde and, as such, is both defined and limited by the museum’s permanent collection. All the same, certain artists are conspicuous in their absence and too many of those present-and-accounted-for are represented by near misses, transitional pieces, or out-and-out failures."

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