ShareThis time last year, Studio Matters went on retreat. It withdrew in anticipation of a long, difficult year. The new one promises to be no easier. Still, retreats are meant as preludes to renewal, not abdication. I was reminded of this by a note that came from a lovely and thoughtful artist in Arkansas. She [...]
Category Archive for 'Things to Read'
ShareEACH CHRISTMAS MORNING I wake up relieved that the struggle against “Happy Holidays” is over for another year. Holidays are holy days, after all. When Hanukkah and Christmas arrive so close together as they do this year, I wonder if it would be possible to announce “Happy Holy Days!” into the secular void. The wondering [...]
ShareART HISTORIANS ARE NOT NECESSARILY the best commentators on art. They are primarily researchers: archival sleuths, inquirers, unearthers of fact. Gumshoes, the best of them. Some can write, many cannot. The discipline draws bookish sorts who are more at home in a library carrel, reading up on the words of some other member of the [...]
ShareHASAN NIYAZI, impressario of Three Pipe Problem, had included a list of readings that informed his essay in the previous post, Navigating the Cognitive Philosophy of Michael Fried. I omitted the roster simply to conform more closely to the format of Studio Matters. The audience for this blog are, in the main, other working artists, [...]
Shareby Hasan Niyazi
CARAVAGGIO AND HIS FOLLOWERS IN ROME has arrived at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas. Those unable to experience the majesty of the Baroque in person are left to ponder the substantial catalogue recently published by Yale University Press.
Featuring essays by exhibition organizers and notable scholars of the Baroque, Michael Fried’s [...]
ShareONE PROBLEM WITH ART HISTORIANS-TURNED-JOURNALISTS lies in the requirements of journalism. The art pundit must be interesting; no matter if accuracy suffers. Diversion is the name of the game. Elegant and high-minded, to be sure, but diverting nonetheless. And there really is not time, given the copy deadlines of daily or even weekly publications, to [...]
ShareJUDGING FROM EMAIL RESPONSES, the accidental cross-shaped form left standing at Ground Zero rouses great ire. All my mail has been sympathetic to the lawsuit against it on the grounds that the cross is not a secular symbol. (I never said it was. I said it resonated beyond sectarian distinctions. Quite a different thought.) It [...]
ShareONCE RADICAL EVIL SHRINKS TO PSYCHOLOGICAL PROPORTIONS, society’s ability to inflict hardship—including the psychological pain of deep remorse—diminishes. Restitution and rehabilitation become one and the same thing. That pulls the rug out from under an artist’s capacity to conceive anything close to the grand hellscapes, sublime in their gravity, that came freely to Hieronymous Bosch. [...]
ShareA small gem of a book that artists should have on their shelves is Jacques Maritain’s The Responsibility of the Artist. Together with Jacques Barzun’s The Use and Abuse of Art, it is all anyone needs to think or talk about the artist’s ultimate purpose.
Dover keeps Barzun in print. Sadly, it does not do the [...]
ShareREADER SAM’S REFERENCE, in a comment on the previous post, to the biblical story of Adam naming the animals lends thrust to Tallis’ argument on—for lack of a better term—the metaphysics of pointing.
The Genesis narrative distills into a simple, vivid anecdote the substanceN of Raymond Tallis’ thesis in Michelangelo’s Finger. The mythical Adam could hardly [...]