Row of construction guys on their cell phones
One day not so long ago, construction workers on their lunch break oogled the girls strolling along. Now, like everyone else, their heads are in their phones. So much for “Standing on the Corner Watching All the Girls Go By.”
I passed these guys on Madison Avenue on my way to The Whitney, part of my whirlwind tour of the new fall museum exhibits. Ranging from the lovely Pictorialist photograph of Julia Cameron to slightly prurient paintings of pre-adolescent girls by Balthus to delicate and lovely eighteenth century pastels to the sublime international textiles show to a modern photography show highlighted by Martha Rosler’s hilarious kitchen demonstration video, the Met once again has an interesting lineup.
Peter Heinemann, Untitled, 2005
Tenderizer in hand, Rosler would likely take off the curatorial heads at the National Academy Museum, where their new show of seven post-war (which means after World War II) artists has taken over the entire museum. It’s a very male show and a non-challenging one at that. Where’s the female voice? Come on NAD!
The Whitney does its thing again. Is anyone really excited about Robert Indiana’s derivative pop art? This is a funny statement, since I’m suggesting his art is derivative of something that’s already derivative. “In the Air”by T.J. Wilcox isn’t particularly original either, reminiscent of Robert Haas’s panoramic mural at New York Historical Society.Still I enjoyed its mesmerizing quality as one panoramic rooftop view of downtown Manhattan flows at high speed through one full day and night all around you. In the darkened gallery, the experience takes on an unexpected reverence.
Is that worth the price of admission? Maybe, if you can get in to see the wonderful Hopper show, too, before it comes down. Sure beats having your head snared by a cell phone.