"Oh no, not another appropriationist, simulationist image-stealer," groans a weary seeker of the new, suddenly confronted with faithful copies of Pop era masterworks. "What a bore, but I might as well find out which member of the rerun tribe has put so much energy into duplicating Jasper Johns' collage and encaustic flags, Roy Lichtenstein's comic-book paintings and Claes Oldenburg's plaster food and clothing. Could be Sherrie Levine or Mike Bidlo. Maybe Richard Prince or Jeff Koons has gone into painting. Maybe David Salle has faded into slavish reverence."
None of the above. The audacious copies are by New York artist Elaine Sturtevant and--unless someone dredges up similar examples from the '50s, consciously done to challenge the notion of originality--she appears to be the precursor of a raging trend, a sort of Post-Modernist front woman. The most interesting thing about the work currently on display is that it was done in the '60s and early '70s. The story goes that she got so much grief for making this controversial stuff--long before it was fashionable--that she dropped out and has re-emerged only recently--with this show, and another of new pieces (including Keith Haring copies) in New York. Meanwhile, her followers are art media darlings.