The Apollo Circle at the Metropolitan Museum of Art hosted a night with curator Randall Griffey on 16 January 2019.
We learned about the museum’s new exhibit, Epic Abstraction. It has gotten a lot of attention which is best described as “bumpy.”
Pollock to Herrera: This title of the show represents in Pollock the collection strength, and in Herrera the aspirational collection growth.
Meeting Curator Randall Griffey
I got to meet him and shake his hand!
He was very cool. Many people in the audience appreciated his great style and candid nature with us.
The Exhibit: Epic Abstraction
This is a lens for which to look at Abstraction. We think about “Epic” in terms of the ideas and the concepts on display.
Jackson Pollock Fun Facts
- He is from Cody, Wyoming.
- He was Thomas Hart Benton’s student until they had a big blowout / breakup.
- Pollock helped mix eggs and make tempura for the America Today mural at the Met and is allegedly a model for one of the figures.
Jackson Pollock “reinvented painting as a physical performance.” For him, the canvas becomes an arena in which to act.
This next picture is not a Jackson Pollock painting, but I just felt the post needed another picture:
Abstract Art Quote from Barnett Newman
We felt the moral crisis of a world in shambles, a world devastated by a Great Depression and a fierce World War, and it was impossible at that time to paint the kind of painting that we were doing — flowers, reclining nudes, people playing the cello… So we actually began … as if painting were not only dead but had never existed. – Barnett Newman, 1967
This quote captures a sense that “the world had changed” after World War II.
My Favorite Painting In The Show
I really like La Vie en Rose by Joan Mitchell, 1979.
It’s a nice exhibit. It’s controversial; check out some of the reviews online. This exhibit has more women artists than any other exhibit in these galleries has had before (kudos!). I really enjoyed getting to hear the curator candidly share facts and stories from “Behind the Scenes” to the Apollo Circle group.
- Met Museum Press Release: Epic Abstraction
- Upcoming Apollo Circle Events: you should join the Apollo Circle! It’s an under-40 membership group with VIP access, curatorial tours, special exhibits, and more. I’ve been a member for years and love it.
- Claire Boston was my date, she’s a journalist at Bloomberg who writes about credit and bonds.
Kathleen F. G. Hutton: Love the bigger and richer story of Midcentury modern Abstraction that emerges when woman artists Mitchell, Harriman, Krasner et al. are included! I think Mitchell’s paintings are gorgeous—thanks—
Get the BEST Business Tips and Productivity Hacks
Work smart and improve your life. Enter your email to join my free Friends Newsletter. You'll get the best tips to boost your career. Read about new productivity hacks, plus see the business articles that I'm reading. Join 7000+ subscribers and find out why investors, CEOs, and museum curators love to get my early trends.