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The Strategic Now: Contemporary Painting @ MoMA

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Sharon Butler reviews The Forever Now: Contemporary Painting in an Atemporal World at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, on view through April 5, 2015. The show features works by works by Richard Aldrich, Joe Bradley, Kerstin Brätsch, Matt Connors, Michaela Eichwald, Nicole Eisenman, Mark Grotjahn, Charline von Heyl, Rashid Johnson, Julie Mehretu, Dianna Molzan, Oscar Murillo, Laura Owens, Amy Sillman, Josh Smith, Mary Weatherford, and Michael Williams.

Butler notes that "many of the seventeen artists included in 'The Forever Now' work with imagery and ideas found online. Who doesn’t? The more important factor that seems to tie these painters together–and this is where Hoptman’s eye comes into play–is a rather dispiriting interest in strategy and finish over experimentation and heart… Taken individually, the work in the show is good, but I think "The Forever Now" misses the mark as a collective assessment of painting today. Many of the paintings struck me as overly contrived and squared away, the awkward inconsistencies and missteps that give canvases life had been rubbed out and eliminated."

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