Sunday, February 11, 2007

By now we're used to it

Only Blake Gopnik, the intelligent and erudite Chief Art Critic of the Washington Post could get away with writing an introduction to the Spring Arts Preview for the Greater DC area for a Washington, DC newspaper and then tell his readers that "If you've decided it's finally time to come to terms with current creativity, this summer is the time to do it and Europe's the place."

If you read Gopnik's writing over the years, it is easy to detect that he has a special personal antipathy (amongst many) towards two subjects: painting, and especially portraiture.

He's also embarked on what seems like a critical personal crusade against the National Portrait Gallery, and in writing about the coming "Portraits of Sandra Day O'Connor," opening in late March at the National Portrait Gallery, he not only tells us that he will do his best to miss this coming show, but also labels the work of two of the portrait artists in the show that he will apprently never see, as "insipid" and "toadying made flesh."

Gopnikmeister strikes again. Read him here.

On the positive side, the WaPo's listing of visual art shows had for the last few years degenerated into a listing of museum shows, and almost excluded area galleries from the mix. A while back Gopnik told me that he was trying to include more and more galleries in the preview listings, and he has delivered on that promise, as the local exhibition calendar is jam packed with good exhibitions, both museums and galleries, to catch this spring.

A well done to Gopnik for this refreshing and important change!

Save this page and refer to it often.

PS - Gopnik also has a really good article on the Corcoran and its new direction in which we find out all about the future that Greenhalgh is planning (and also that he skipped a traveling Frida Kahlo show over the coming "Modernism" exhibition - AAAARGH!). Read it here.