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The West Wins

July 28, 2001

Who is David Pagel and who cares what he thinks about Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell at the Bowers Museum ("A Wild West Saddled by Snobbery," July 20)?

The facts are these: This exhibition was put together from some 60 different collections around the country by Peter Hassrick, known as the nation's leading scholar on the two best-known Western artists of all time.

I've been to the exhibition. It's terrific, and I plan to go again and again. Don't let the poison pen of a bitter cynic dissuade you from seeing a truly rare collection of two great American master painters of the Old West.

MARK BEDOR

Studio City

*

Not only was the exhibition a rare gift to be able to see such amazing pieces of art by two such gifted artists, it was a glance into the American West as they saw it, and it shines through in their bronze work, their paintings and their letters. It conveyed how much they loved what they created from their vision of the always-changing American West.

There is no "snobbery," as Pagel writes, just his own. With or without bad reviews like Pagel's, these artists' work will continue to teach, enrich and delight people for many centuries to come.

FRANCES TERRELL LIPPMAN

Los Angeles

*

After reading Pagel's review, I was reminded of an article in The Times that appeared a few years ago, in which a Washington Post art critic rhapsodized over a "painting" by Luciano Pavarotti that, on closer examination, turned out to be a paint-by-the numbers kit the great tenor had painted strictly for his own pleasure.

Art critics. Read them if you must, but take everything they say with a huge grain of salt.

DON M. HOWARD

Oak Hills

*

I just wanted to thank Pagel for drawing my attention to the Walker Evans exhibition at the Getty ("A Vision of America," July 14). In addition, I have to comment on how well the article was written. Pagel is a gifted writer and captivated me from start to finish.

GRANT LUND

Tustin

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