Quick study

Terry Winters
Terry Winters, Good Government, 1984, oil on linen, 101 1/4 × 136 1/4 inches. Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; purchase, with funds from The Mnuchin Foundation and the Painting and Sculpture Committee 85.15 © Terry Winters.

Featuring links to articles about the Painting in the 1980s and Raymond Pettibon exhibitions, distracted by politics, Mother Jones, David Corn, Blue Mountain Center, I Am Not Your Negro, an Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon, more…

This week “Fast Forward: Painting in the 1980s” opened at the Whitney Museum. The exhibition features many of the artists I loved when I first started painting–Terry Winters, Leon Golub, Moira Dryer, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Julian Schnabel, Joyce Pensato, Mary Heilmann, Glenn Ligon, and Walter Robinson–and others I have come to admire more recently. In her review in the NYTimes, Roberta Smith reports that the show is “irresistible if flawed.”

The Trump presidency is distracting me. In the studio, I can’t stay away from Twitter (follow Two Coats here), and, although I continue posting daily drawings on Instagram, I’ve completed only one painting since Trump’s (poorly attended) inauguration. Apparently I’m not alone. The Atlantic reports that  BetterWorks, a company that specializes in productivity software, found nearly a third of those it surveyed had been less productive since the election. Read more.

Mother Jones has become one of my favorite sources for political news. It’s a reader-supported non-profit news magazine, and all their content is available online. In October 2016 it was MJ Washington Bureau Chief David Corn who first reported that Russian intelligence had possibly cultivated Trump as a KGB asset. This week he comments on the Washington Post’s bombshell report that  Trump’s National Security Adviser is not only dishonest, but that he is a threat to US policy. NOTE: In 1982, Mother Jones co-founder Adam Hochschild and his siblings turned their parents Adirondacks lodge into an artist and writers’ retreat called Blue Mountain Center.

At Hyperallergic, Thomas Michelli gives the New Museum’s Raymond Pettibon show a rave review. “‘A Pen of All Work,’ masterfully curated by Gary Carrion-Murayari and Massimiliano Gioni, blows apart every assumption and misgiving I might have harbored about this artist. Context may be everything, but content — lots of it — doesn’t hurt.” Read more.

On her blog this week Mira Schor posted a thoughtful review of I Am Not Your Negro, Raoul Peck’s outstanding documentary comprising materials from James Baldwin’s archive, that is a meditation on the history of racism in our country. “At the center of the film is Baldwin himself, speaking. He is an intensely compelling figure, as eloquent as Shakespeare and as riveting a performer as the greatest actors in the history of film and theater, in what he says but also in how his intonations, the expressions of his face, his slight elegant body carry and amplify the power of his words. Each word rings like the bell of a medieval cathedral, crystal clear, eloquent, passionate, dismissive, razor-sharp, with a powerful use of a unique intonation and pauses that are living demonstrations of a brain sorting through complex and emotionally charged thought to find the most eloquent formulation possible….” Read more, and don’t miss this important film.

I’m putting this on the calendar: “For the fourth year in a row, New York’s Museum of Modern Art will host an Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon, the goal of which is to create Wikipedia entries for women artists. The event is slated for March 11. This year’s event will feature a panel about information online moderated by Kimberly Drew, the MoMA’s social media manager. She’ll be discussing fake news and how to find accurate sources on the internet with writer Joanne McNeil and Data & Society Research Institute fellow Zara Rahman.”  (via ArtNews) Read more.

I’ve been thinking about how changes to the Affordable Care Act could affect thousands of people in opioid recovery programs. Today in the NYTimes, Katharine Q. Seelye and Abby Goodnough report that the consequences of a GOP repeal would indeed be devastating. “The health law encourages primary care doctors to incorporate addiction treatment into their practices. It provided grants to several hundred community health centers around the country, many in rural areas, to begin or expand mental health and medication-assisted treatment, which combines counseling and drugs like Suboxone.” Read more.

Here’s a snap of the first painting I’ve finished all year. Based on the Instagram drawings, oil on canvas, 32 x 38 inches.

Related posts:
Retro book review: NYC art scene in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s
Rejecting the New: Abstract painting in the 1980s

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