The Lives of the Surrealists

Laura Freeman at Literary Review: When Salvador Dalí came to lecture at the International Surrealist Exhibition in London in 1936, he arrived with two Russian wolfhounds on leads. He wore a deep-sea diver’s suit and carried a billiard cue. A jewelled dagger hung from his belt. The subject of his lecture was ‘Paranoia, The Pre-Raphaelites,…

A Soutine Retrospective

Peter Schjeldahl at The New Yorker: “Flesh,” the title of a small, potent, and timely Chaim Soutine retrospective, elegantly curated by Stephen Brown, at the Jewish Museum, is genteel. “Meat” would better fit the show’s focus on the ferocious paintings of plucked fowl and bloody animal carcasses that the great and, I believe, underrated Russian-French…

Is the Cemetery Dead?

David Sloane at The Boston Globe. Cemeteries face a sort of life-or-death crisis. The increasing popularity of cremation has meant that cemeteries are no longer critical to storing remains, while mourning on social media has removed the necessity of cemeteries as a primary place to mourn. Public mourning also has re-emerged with the widespread acceptance…

on Ellsworth Kelly’s Austin, 2015

Harry Cooper at Artforum: WHEREVER YOU LOOK—the press release, the brochure, the fact sheet, the cornerstone—Ellsworth Kelly’s new building at the Blanton Museum of Art at the University of Texas at Austin insists on one thing, namely that it is one thing: a single work of art with a single name (Austin) and a single author (Kelly)…

Orphan Utopia

Reed McConnell at Cabinet Magazine: When the angels appeared to John Ballou Newbrough early one morning in 1881, he was nothing if not well prepared. A dentist and Spiritualist, he had spent the last ten years purifying himself for supernatural contact by abstaining from meat, bathing twice a day, and rising before dawn. The visit…