Suzanne says I have an art esthetic. That makes me laugh.
A massive mural by one of my wavy favorites, Thomas Hart Benton, has recently been rescued from storage. Carol Vogel has the story in the NY Times.
“On New Year’s Day 1931, a new and radically different building opened amid the town houses of West 12th Street: Joseph Urban’s International-Style New School for Social Research, with one room in particular as a star attraction. Thomas Hart Benton, the American realist painter, had lined the third-floor boardroom with nine panels of what would be a 10-panel mural, ‘America Today,’ depicting a panoply of pre-Depression American types, from flappers to farmers, steel workers to stock market tycoons. Lloyd Goodrich, a prominent art historian, pronounced it a breakthrough that heralded a new approach to mural painting, ‘of actually taking reality and making mural art directly out of it.’
“Eight decades later, ‘America Today,’ now considered one of the most important and famous examples of American scene painting, is languishing in storage. That will change, however, because AXA Equitable, the insurance company that bought it nearly 30 years ago, has decided to donate it to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. …
“The only problem,” writes Vogel, “is that the museum is so squeezed for space that the mural’s first public appearance after the handover won’t be until at least 2015, when the Met takes over the Whitney Museum of American Art’s landmark Marcel Breuer building on Madison Avenue (after the Whitney’s move to the meatpacking district).” More.
Something to look forward to in 2015.
Photograph: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York