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A Flagrant Foul

April 23, 1994

I am angry at and deeply disappointed by Cathy Curtis' review of " 'Very' Visual Dialogue--Personal Journeys in Abstract Painting" exhibition (which includes some of my works), ("Dowell Works Provide Powerful Lift to So-So Show," March 14).

The simple purpose of the exhibition was threefold: (1) to allow each artist to be represented by pivotal old and new works so that the viewer could understand the evolution of the artwork itself, (2) to allow students and non-artist viewers an insight into how artists can be affected by each other's personality and artworks; and (3) perhaps the most experimental element of the exhibition--an attempt to create a purely visual dialogue through careful arrangement of the different artworks in the gallery space.

This dialogue would be accomplished as the artworks' inherent formal elements (line, shape, form, color, texture, composition, and size) played off one another across the room, causing a heightened and charged viewing experience for the gallery visitor.

Background-researched critical analysis and honest evaluation of the actual artwork are invaluable. It helps the artist's personal growth and expands the art viewing audience. Your non-contextual reading of this show that uses conjectural phrases like self-serving, self effacing; and funny jargon like low-key wallpaper, glibness, tiredness haunts, dispiriting thinness, keep-up-your-spirits tune, vaguely suggestive of a game board to describe serious painting endeavor are inexcusable.

Your flagrant writing style helps absolutely no one but you.

TOM KRUMPAK

Los Angeles

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