Painting after Postmodernism: Belgium - USA investigates why so many believed Marcel Duchamp when he made his infamous statement of 1918: that painting was dead. After all, as Barbara Rose eloquently argues , Duchamp was wrong. In the decades before and after World War II, Picasso, Matisse, Miró and the New York School continued to make monumental mural scale paintings on the level of the greatest art of the past. However, in the politically radical 1960s and 1970s it once again became fashionable to toll the death knell for painting, perceived as the product of bourgeois culture. In its place galleries and museums defined the avant-garde as conceptual art, video, mixed media and installations, all of which denied painting its position of pre-eminence. Painting was reduced to just another broken-down offshoot of postmodernism. Highly influential art critic Barbara Rose investigates how contemporary artists rediscovered the art of painting, juxtaposing works from Belgian and American artists to create a cross-cultural dialogue.
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Barbara Rose is the Grande Dame of American art criticism. Once married to artist Frank Stella, she was immersed in the NYC art scene of the fifties, sixties and seventies. Rose wrote for Art International, Vogue and New York Magazine, and worked as a senior curator for the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston.
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