Yood writes: "... seeing the work [of the Monster Roster artists] together, as it so rarely was during its creation or since, is a valuable experience. As the exhibition’s title indicates, the curators buy into—as I think they should—similar arguments made about Abstract Expressionism in New York during the same period: that this was a charged moment in art history when existence and art-making seemed a matter of life and death, when the question on many lips was, 'Should I die or should I paint?' As Harold Rosenberg (who later taught at the University of Chicago) put it, 'painting became the means of confronting in daily practice the problematic nature of modern individuality.' Note Rosenberg’s decisive word choice, not the 'potentially problematic nature...' not the 'sometimes problematic nature...' but straight out and blatant, modern individuality was problematic. Art-making was serious stuff, a sensibility that permeated and obsessed all these artists, formed in the dramatic crucible of the 1930s and 1940s."
Micchelli writes: "The installation is, in a word, stunning — as spare and light-filled as the work itself. The collages, with their rhythmic interplay of repeating images, shimmer across expanses of paper with touches of jewel-like color when they’re not exploding in flashes of graphic intensity. That they can be so materially beautiful in spite of their often wrenching subject matter is one of the paradoxes that carries Spero’s work out of the times for which they were made and makes them invaluable for our own."
In a new video by Art21, Nancy Spero (1926-2009) works on prints and "discusses how collaborations with other artists activated her work by allowing for greater variation. In working with others and drawing from an extensive collection of acquired and original figural images, Spero was able to produce art late into her life. Spero's piece for the Venice Biennale, “Maypole / Take No Prisoners” (2007), is shown in process"
For more context on Spero's career and her 2010 exhibition at the Centre Pompidou in Paris can be found in Barry Schwabsky's article No Images of Man: On Nancy Spero.
An impressive on-line recreation of Nancy Spero's mixed-media work Notes in Time. "The cyclic structure and complex nonnarrative flow of Nancy Spero’s Notes in Time make it the artist’s most ambitious work. Spero, who died last year at 83, recalled that creating it “was like working on a book, a solitary activity. I had to sequester myself"
ArtKritique's John Matthews writes about the Pompidou Center's Nancy Spero exhibition. Matthews writes: "It's an enormous credit to an artist so easily identified with the pop-art, feminism, ant-war protest and all sorts of counter cultural reference that the visual and physical presence of Spero's work can stand outside and above the biography, theory and reportage and leave one quivering."
Edited by artist Brett Baker, Painters' Table highlights writing from the painting blogosphere as it is published and serves as a platform for exploring blogs that focus primarily on the subject of painting.