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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Just stumbled across this reply to my Lester Johnson piece on Berkshire Fine Arts by the poet Rosanna Warren. Google every gallery on earth and you will find 99% are exhibiting "one show": a found object(ersatz sculpture ) on the floor, photo-document on the wall and a pseudo-profound statement about some group in need of uplift into the Hegelian dialectic.Global group think!!

Figurative Expressionist:Lester Johnson -->
Dear Martin,

What an extraordinary piece. I wish I could have seen the Johnson
show; I'm living in New York this year, on leave, writing.

You put your finger precisely on the problem: the coercive Hegelianism
of Greenberg's vision, and the intolerance it institutionalized. Great
image too, about the media world of Pop (and post-Pop, conceptual art)
as a vast  pyramid built by an army of slaves (us!). It's refreshing
to have you articulate so strongly and lucidly the fact of mass
dehumanization in which our culture of mass advertising and
consumerism collaborates. And to set Johnson's art as a
counter-phenomenon, of highly intelligent (not romantic) response and

I never studied with LJ, but have admired his work over the years, and
am sorry to miss this show. Good for Acme-


1 comment:

  1. Another nice comment on this article after I commented on another article on Lester by John Yau on "Hyperallergic":

    "Thank you for your wonderful and erudite piece on artist Lester
    Johnson. I am quite taken by his life and work. His "dark" imagery is reminiscent of
    Francisco Goya's Black Paintings. The "art world" needs more writing like yours. Again thank you. "