In the years following the end of World War II, a small group of American painters living in New York seized the spotlight of artistic innovation--which for the past century had focused primarily on Paris--and rose to preeminence in the national and international art world. "Rebel Painters of the 1950s" highlights those artists--among them Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Philip Guston, Adolph Gottlieb, Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, Barnett Newman, Ad Reinhardt, Mark Rothko, and Clyfford Still_who challenged the aesthetic establishment and created the style of painting known today as Abstract Expressionism. In addition to these individuals and other artists in their circle who comprised the first generation of the New York School, "Rebel Painters of the 1950s" also provides portraits of the critics and writers, notably Clement Greenberg, Harold Rosenberg, and Thomas Hess, who articulated the significance of this artistic movement, and the dealers, such as Peggy Guggenheim, Betty Parsons, Charles Egan, Samuel Kootz, and Sidney Janis, who afforded patronage and public access to the work. Like any historical phenomenon, Abstract Expressionism defies precise definition. Even the term itself is subject to debate. "Action painting," "American-type painting," and the "New York School" are phrases often used synonymously, although for most scholars and the public, Abstract Expressionism remains the most convenient and instantly recognizable umbrella under which to discuss the collective qualities of advanced American art at the midpoint of the twentieth century. Moreover, while the artists subsequently labeled Abstract Expressionists frequently resisted categorization and often stressed the philosophical and formal distinctions among themselves, there is nevertheless a consensus among scholars that Abstract Expressionism was a cohesive intellectual and artistic experience. It possessed a geographical center--New York; the individuals affiliated with it knew each other and frequently interacted; and, most important, they shared a common approach to making art, even though the appearance of their paintings varied widely, from the intensely gestural to the highly restrained.

Join our Church of Art and Apathy when you get good and ready, or around-to-it. This is the official church for those that don't wish to identify with a specific religion. For those that feel that atheism and agnosticism are just too much damm work. Others who believe that their religion solves all their problems, need not apply. We are a relatively New Religion with new attitudes. We are Apathists. We seek no converts. We distribute no pamphlets. We ring no door bells. The Church of Art and Apathy was thought about by its Founders for several years, before they decided to organize on December 26th, 1968, they decided not to become tax exempt, nor claim any guidance from any divine source.

In 1979 they decided to look around for a suitable church site, but that effort proved to be too much trouble, and besides they really didn't care where they met anyway. The founders thought they should have a clergy person, but so far all that applied were rejected. They asked stupid questions about our not having a prayer book with writing in it. Some complained that we didn't have a Symbol or a Logo identifying our religion. Some wanted us to light candles, bless wine, chant, sway. kneel, pray or in general "carry on " like mainstream religions....all of these candidates for the clergy person were rejected.

We soon will be celebrating the 37th year of our founding. We Apathists encourage those that share our deeply rooted apathy to think about joining our church as non-active members. We seek no donations nor offerings.... you keep your money, and we'll keep ours. As we have no mother church, postal address, telephone number, or website, we are sometimes difficult to locate.

However if you have faith, and are not in any big rush to join our Church of Art and Apathy, you are the type of person that could benefit by being an Apathist. We are happy to say that in almost 37 years, not one of our members has been called "a dirty Apathist " to their face, they have demanded, and received “apple fritters” as their religious rights, in prisons and university cafeterias, and our Religion is not part of any college course on “Comparative Religions “, and as far as we know, none of our faithful have been healed, saved, or converted. Some have rented from Avis but we consider that as free will. Someday we would like to sponsor our own TV ministry, but we haven’t figured out as yet what to preach about. We strongly believe that one should Not take YES for an answer…..but if they do, they do.

We do have a motto: Don’t Bother Us…and We Won’t Bother You.

The Hartford Courant On Valentine's Day, there were flowers in the first O, with ribbon going through the hoop of the G. For New Year's Day, the numbers 2005 were set behind the word Google. On Election Day, the second O was checked. And in honor of Ray Charles' birthday on Sept. 23, 2004, an image of the singer replaced the first O. These are the creations of Google sketch artist Dennis Hwang, whose work is seen by millions every time he exhibits on the Internet search engine. The 26-year-old Google webmaster calls his drawings doodles. Since 2000, Hwang has marked events and holidays--American and international--with drawings on, around and through the Google icon on the site's home page. That's five Valentine's Days. Four Christmases. Four 4ths of July. Four Thanksgivings. The Olympics. The holidays repeat each year; Hwang's drawings never do. His work has reached cult status. There are Web sites and blogs devoted to Hwang and his work. When he began rendering the doodles regularly, fans waited to see what he'd come up with next. On the blog Ryan's Rant (www.ryanwaddell.com), the doodles were displayed every time they were updated for those who missed them. Hwang spoke recently about his doodles and how he got an ideal job. Most people have to choose among their interests. How did you get such a perfect job that meshes computers and art? I had an internship with Google in college. I was given the task of helping with maintenance of the Web site. I was an assistant webmaster. Before I joined Google, [founders] Larry [Page] and Sergey [Brin] were already dabbling with holiday logos. ... When I joined, one of my managers knew I was studying art, and they said I should give it a shot. Since then, I've been doing it solo.

By Bobbie Leigh You give, the museum gets. Museums count on donations, and donors count on a tax deduction. It should be simple, but like all things, the devil is in the details. Charitable giving is an art in itself. For example, when a collector offered a group of Inuit carvings to the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky, director Peter Morrin recalls, "We respectfully declined as we had no context for that type of art." But when Steven Block of Louisville offered Morrin a collection of 87 Whistler lithographs, the museum was thrilled to add to its Whistler holdings. "The Block Collection helped us in an area where we needed bolstering," he says. It was an ideal arrangement. The gift positioned the Speed as a major center for the study of Whistler, and Block was delighted to give his collection to his hometown museum. By networking with dealers, curators and museum directors, as well as consulting with financial managers or attorneys, you can find the best fit for your donation, streamline the process, earn a tax deduction and give your art to an institution where it can be most appreciated. Through your gift to a museum, you reaffirm that art plays an important role in strengthening a civil society. Selecting a Museum Like many dealers, Ted Cooper, owner of the Adams-Davidson Galleries in Washington, D.C., advises collectors about donations to museums. "We prepared an appraisal for a client in Washington who had some major German Expressionist paintings," says Cooper. "He wanted to contribute locally, and we advised him to donate to the Phillips Collection because his paintings were a good fit with that museum’s other German Expressionist paintings." In other words, context is crucial. In deciding where to give, the donor needs expertise and an awareness of the art market. You may, for example, have a particularly charming John Marin watercolor of Deer Isle, Maine, that you would like to give to the National Gallery, which happens to have more than 1,000 John Marins. If the gallery already had a good example of that image from the same year, it would most likely decline your donation since it would not add depth to its collection. In contrast, a local or regional museum just starting to build its collection of American Modernists or marine watercolors might be delighted with your gift.

The glamorous look marked skylines from New York to Shanghai and streamlined everything from film and fashion to jewelry and automobiles. Art Deco was the name given, long after the fact, to the brazenly commercial, streamlined style that emerged in Europe, primarily Paris, prior to World War I. Spreading around the globe, it dominated architecture and decorative arts during the 1920s and '30s. Whereas worshipers of Art Nouveau—the previous stylistic rage—were obsessed with nature and decadent symbolism and filled their designs with arabesques, whiplash curves and tendrils, Art Deco designers embraced machinery and power. Using modern materials such as plastic and chrome, opulent fabrics and precious gems, their designs were replete with geometric patterns-circles, zigzags, squares—classical motifs, bright colors and just about anything that hinted of speed. There is pizzazz and energy in Art Deco, as well as glamour and luxury. By the end of World War II, Art Deco had come to be seen as too frivolous for a world in shock from death and destruction. But in the past quarter century, critics and scholars have taken up the style and preservationists have saved its buildings from the wrecking ball. Perhaps the most comprehensive exhibition ever of Art Deco artifacts and images is on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, through January 9, 2005. First mounted last year by the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) in London, the show features more than 240 works: diamond and onyx jewelry from Cartier, a 1935 Auburn 851 speedster, evening gowns by a host of French couturiers, travel posters by the Ukrainian-born French designer known as Cassandre, paintings by Polish-born artist Tamara de Lempika and furnishings from the lavishly decorated grand salon of the 1925 Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes in Paris, from which Art Deco took its impetus and ultimately its name. The style culminated in the New York World's Fair of 1939 and '40, but its legacy is alive in such landmarks as New York City's Chrysler and Empire State buildings.

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Pause For Thought

Wright on Abstract

"I've been doing a lot of abstract painting lately, extremely abstract. No brush, no paint, no canvas, I just think about it. "