New Frontiers in American Painting

New Frontiers in American Painting

New Frontiers in American Painting

New Frontiers in American Painting

Excerpt

The books now pouring from the presses by various critics studiously appraise Whistler and Sargent, rehash the Impressionists and Cézanne--but meticulously avoid creative men whose work has extended our American province in painting. Whenever living men are under consideration, inevitably the Nationalist school is selected as the most telling expression we have contributed to the thought of the 20th Century.

There is something shameful about this evasion. Though for many years it has been the custom of Americans to be humble about our contribution ("new nation," and all that--really aggressive humility), the time is here to discuss what we're doing in positive terms. We have advanced. There has been a revolution--but one would not suspect it from even so recent a show as the hippopotamus at the Metropolitan in January, 1943.

Unfortunately, art audiences rarely keep pace with more inventive artists. Primarily because they expect the artist to confine his expression within the known experience of that audience-- whereas it is the obligation of that audience to grow up to the state-

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