Wednesday, July 14, 2010
More good press for the Charles Burchfield show at the Whitney
(Charles Burchfield, Orion in December, 1959)
What impressed me most was not so much the oeuvre, but the way the show was designed and curated. It has the stamp of an artist. In this case, he’s Robert Gober.
Each room has its own atmosphere, its own communication. And the show as a whole is pared down. In one room, there are but two paintings, for example. This is what I aim for in a single drawing: a tightly communicated but complex image. I’ve learned that it can take a thousand to get there.
The work itself leaves me with mixed feelings. Some details and atmospheres are immediately entrancing; but there is also a very tight tie to the written word that feels a bit too literal or familiar to me. These images border on cliché: denuded trees, barren streets. I feel pulled to read the journals instead. But that said, who cares. I have no need for original subject. Really. And there’s so much to see here about being true to one's own work.