Micchelli writes: "De Kooning’s hand... feels out the image in two dimensions, creating space and volume that exists in its own enclosed precinct. I speculate that the sensation would not be far removed from the way he squeezed clay between his fingers to make his gangly, clotted sculptures, which were always one or two steps removed from being bas-reliefs. These drawings would be marvelous by any standard; that they were done blindly is astonishing. The sensitivity of touch, the rawness of the sexuality, the tactility of the forms, the wit and invention of the imagery, and the ethereal gradations of the charcoal line are masterful even by de Kooning’s very high bar."
As part of his blog series Paintings I Like Paul Corio reflects on the de Kooning retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and on how seeing the full range of de Kooning's oeuvre illuminates the "real problems" in painting.
"The real problems painting faced after Ab Ex and Color Field were the same problems that painting has faced for about 700 years... Periodically, you have to change the way you do it - you can't go on painting the way that the previous generation painted... DeKooning understood the ideas that were in the air at the time. He chose the ones that were useful to him and rejected the ones he had no use for. He mixed these together with his influences of the the recent and distant past, and most importantly added to the force of an intensely personal vision of how one should paint. I think that the contemporary painter, trying to figure out how to proceed in the impossibly complex art scene of the early twenty-first century, could learn a lot from this approach."
D Richmond wraps up a series of blog posts on the recent de Kooning Retrospective at MoMA with a personal post, summing up what de Kooning's body of work means to today's painters.
Richmond writes: "De Kooning's brush floats around the figures space and presence, implying the figures presence through the manipulation of paint effects much like I try to with words to describe this thing, this thing that makes me have little choice but to wrestle with it in the studio or here on the digital page. I think this is the kind of feeling that only artists feel, a love and fascination of this thing that drives us to great lengths and sometimes profound depression or economic failure in an attempt to consume this thing or be part of it. It is to outsiders a strange and peculiar condition or profession."
In his weekly podcast, Tyler Green discusses the current de Kooning retrospective with pulizter-prize winner and de Kooning biographer Mark Stevens.
Stevens notes that "the revelation of the show should be, because the paintings have been not nearly discussed enough, is his late 70's work. Those particular paintings... are absolutly miracles... extremely juicy, gorgeous, heavy, passionate sorts of pictures. They're not like anything else in art."
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.