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Saturday, September 18, 2010

The orange line

Nothing is surprising in New York: think of the Messerschmidt portraits at the Neue Galerie: faces yawning and frowning and laughing and just as he imagined himself, and doing everything else faces can do. As the writeup by the always interesting Holland Cotter says, his mental disturbance manifested itself in his art. Yes indeed it did. That's not altogether surprising. the titles were added after his death. And, adds Cotter, these sculptures, which once struck audiences as totally nuts, now make "some human sense in our century, when everyone could use some psychotherapy."  Sure, if they could pay for it. I haven't been lately, but that's not the only reason why. Like, who has time? My friends must, because constantly, someone is saying: "That's the day I see my shrink."
Actually about New York, right now that is, apart from the immense stage sets for the Ring that robert Lepage has constructed for the Met, my favorite thing is a thin orange line of paint that goes about eight miles, has existed for four years, and has not be widely noticed. An article in the Times today calls it "An Artist's Alfresco John Hancock": nice. He covers his face in the picture of him, wants to be known only as Momo, and runs from the East River to the Hudson, north to 14th Street and south to Grand Street, zips (oof, I guess I'm thinking of Newman's zips, but anyway it goes) over curbs and subway grates and around lamposts and covers of manholes... which reminds me of something I was reading about Holes and how they, oh phooey, what was it? More anon.
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