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Bay View

November 09, 1986

Writing with impressive but ill-fitting rhetoric about an exhibition of Bay Area art, William Wilson claims art in the San Francisco area shows as much "passionate conviction" and "noble futility" as any art made anywhere in this country ("The Bay Is on View in Newport," Oct. 26).

Well, you could have fooled the many artists and art viewers who complain that the art scene there is stuck in an aesthetic rut and has been without a consistently adventurous gallery in years. The Bay Area is a lovely place with little vitality in the visual arts on display there; theater and new performance may flourish now, but the visual arts plateaued long ago. Whatever vital art may be produced there has trouble finding a showplace willing to take the risk.

No, little "art that counts" has come out of the Bay Area in recent years. It's sad that a once-important art environment has become so dull, but that is largely true, whatever nostalgic nonsense Wilson speaks.

T. R. JAHNS

Irvine

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