Monday, October 17, 2011

Taking in Mr. Serra

 I found this in the drafts from when I went to the member preview of the Richard Serra drawing retrospective at SFMOMA last week - so here it is.

I think one of.the things that is the most interesting about this Serra drawing retrospective is the process.
Actually, coming from him hat should be expected - and it was, so let me back up.

I most appreciate the pieces where the texture truly takes over and, more importantly, those few pieces where the papers and the pigment join ... and don't join.
There are many places where he has taken two ordinary - though ordinarily large - sets of paper and butted them right up to one another, but the paintstick veers off at some point - though in a straight, or at least straight looking, line.
But there are also times where the pages don't actually meet, even though you expect them to or they look like they do.

Is this him keeping us on our toes? Is this him playing with our expectations? Is it just me?
Truth is that it doesn't really matter. Those particular works are just good.

And I feel totally justified in saying that because not all the work in the exhibition is. Some of it stands out cognitively - rather like a Rothko or a Newman in some regards - even though I don't find myself that terribly fond of it.
But some of it is just flat out stunning and beautiful and amazing.
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If you are interested in this Serra exhibit, it is now open to the public, and the details are here.

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