art

‘Nasty Women/Bad Hombres’: Determination and Daring at El Museo del Barrio

Sandra Bertrand

Many of the artists represented were uprooted from the Dominican Republic and Leslie Jimenez expresses the social disparity in her Humble Heroes from the Stroller Stories of New York series.  Images of domestic workers and their charges are created by intricately weaving polyester thread on vellum.  These are small, painstaking works of great beauty.  Regina Viquerra’s large violet bouquet constructed entirely of plastic bags is noteworthy, mainly as an example of the esthetic possibility in found objects.  

The Dazzling World of Yayoi Kusama

Kazko Nakane

At the entrance, many happy, bright-colored, large paintings hang on the wall to welcome all visitors. “Love Myself (2010)” radiates a joyous pink and blue resembling Matisse but harbors a kick of contemporary uneasiness. One sees an endless number of eyes swarming like a school of small fish on these canvases. The recognition of her work came with her shows in New York and Washington, D.C. galleries consisting of a series of “Net” paintings filled with small dots on huge canvases, some as large as 10 meters in width. 

Women Artists and Postwar Abstraction at MOMA

Sandra Bertrand

It's an old story, one that should have been relegated to the dustbins of history long ago, but the environment in which artists like Berthe Morisot, Georgia O’Keefe, Frida Kahlo and Lee Krasner to name but a few grew up was rigidly defined.  Women were hardly solitary stars but marked by the liaisons, constellations if you will—familial, marital and otherwise—that allowed for their creative endeavors to flourish.  

Paying Homage to a Photography Legend: Diane Arbus at the Met Breuer

Sandra Bertrand

A decade after her untimely death by suicide in 1971 at the age of 48, a trove of never-before-seen images were unearthed, stored in a basement darkroom on Charles Street in the West Village. And two-thirds of those images on display have been generously produced by her daughters, Doon and Amy Arbus for this exhibit.   What a viewing experience it is.   

‘Photography and Foul Play’ at the Met

Sandra Bertrand

Unquestionably, this is one exhibition that gives the viewer plenty to look at.  As a walk along history’s treadmill, it divvies up a rich array of humanity—replete with all its smiles and snarls.  Samuel G. Szabo (1854-61) was an early bird who snagged shoplifters, wife beaters, pickpockets, burglars and highwaymen in his lens, then meticulously placed them in an album with oval cutout frames and descriptions in the finest calligraphy.  

Meet the Staff at Highbrow Magazine: Chief Art Critic Sandra Bertrand

Sandra Bertrand

For the last several decades, I have been actively pursuing my interests in the fine arts.  My writing has encompassed plays, articles and reviews on many aspects of the fine arts, i.e., paintings, film, theatre, books and the popular culture at large. My travels have recently taken me to Crete, Greece, Peru, Belize, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Spain, and wherever the muse calls.  My own paintings are often the result of these wanderings and I am an active member of the National Association of Women Artists, (NAWA). As Chief Art Critic for Highbrow Magazine, and a long time resident of New York City, I love covering the art scene in museums, galleries and venues, reading the pulse in one of the most fascinating places on the planet.

Picasso’s Sculpture Show at MOMA – The Artist’s Giant Playpen

Sandra Bertrand

Occupying the entire fourth floor galleries, the exhibit allows the spectator to experience many enthralling works in the round, returning to re-examine, question, and wonder at the prolific, unstoppable genius of the man.   A handy takeaway pamphlet with sketches and accompanying descriptions eliminates the need for wall notes.  This reinvention of gallery space to accommodate approximately 140 sculptures is the handiwork of curators Ann Temkin and Anne Umland, with the assistance of Virginie Perdrisot, Curator of Sculptures and Ceramics at the Musee National Picasso in Paris. 

‘The New Rijksmusuem’ Sheds Light on the Renovation of the Netherlands’ Most Famous Museum

Gabriella Tutino

While the designs and construction of the museum are being worked on, restoration and organization for the museum’s art collection—1 million objects ranging from sculptures to paintings to furniture—is also underway. The documentary sheds a light into some of the processes and behind-the-scenes of the work it takes to maintain art, as well as acquire pieces. For example, the film follows Curator of Asian Art Menno Fitski as he procures two Japanese temple guards for an exhibit, and it follows Curator of Furniture Reinier Baarsen as he oversees the reproduction of a 17th century room.

Pathos and Minimalism: Doris Salcedo at the Guggenheim

Sabeena Khosla

Constructing memorials to those lost in conflict requires simultaneously painting with both a broad and fine-toothed brush (metaphorically speaking). The artist should not ignore nuanced suffering, yet the main goal is at the service of events that affect people en masse. While Doris Salcedo’s pieces, focusing on the Colombian Civil War, do not employ the typical tropes of memorials, they are still imbued with the sensitivity required of them due to her process and personal history, having lost family members to the conflict.

The Art of Al Hirschfeld – The 'Line King' Reigns On

Sandra Bertrand

So distinctive were the portraits from the line king’s pen that celebrities lined up in droves to be “Hirschfelded.”  And the roll call is staggering:  Charlie Chaplin, Carol Channing, Winston Churchill, Ella Fitzgerald, Jane Fonda, Ringo Starr, Liza Minnelli and Tommy Tune, just to name a few.  Over a hundred original drawings and other ephemera from his early work in Hollywood to his latest iconic portraits for The New York Times are currently on dazzling display at the New York Historical Society.  

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