June 7, 2008 |
A former guard at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh has been charged with vandalizing a million-dollar painting he apparently didn't like, damaging it beyond repair. A museum surveillance camera caught the vandalism May 16, police said Thursday. Timur Serebrykov, 27, of Pittsburgh is accused of defacing "Night Sky nldr 12" by Latvian-born Vija Celmins. The 31-by-37 1/2 -inch oil-on-canvas painting of a black, starlit night had a large vertical gouge in the middle and was damaged beyond repair, according to a police affidavit.
February 12, 2007 |
The first image encountered in the soul-stirring Vija Celmins drawings retrospective at the Hammer Museum serves as a potent epigraph to the tale that unfolds beyond. The show is installed chronologically except for this image, which dates from 1983, around the midpoint of the exhibition's 40-year span. A 21-inch square, the sheet is dense with the darkness of a night sky flecked with small, brilliant spots of light. Near the center hovers a diffused luminous patch suggesting a galaxy.
February 11, 2007 |
"MY work is very hard to take apart," says Vija Celmins, gazing around the exhibition of her drawings at the Hammer Museum. "That's why I am always talking about it." Always? Her conversations with artists Chuck Close and Robert Gober are available in books, and she recently talked to Hammer chief curator Gary Garrels in a public program that filled the museum's Billy Wilder Theater. But the works in her show still raise questions.
October 20, 2004 |
If you think that the American political system is churning out presidential candidates whose policies are remarkably alike, then you won't be surprised to learn that something similar is taking place in the art world. At prestigious American museums and university-affiliated galleries, curators of contemporary art have been organizing increasingly homogenous exhibitions.
December 26, 1993 |
If there was a landmark art event for 1993, the disastrous installment last March of New York's Whitney Biennial was it. The show rivaled the train wreck sequence in "The Fugitive." Hating the Whitney Biennial is, of course, a countrywide biennial sport. The show always begs for critical slams, since virtually any "national survey of recent artistic trends" inevitably fails to celebrate the virtues of this, that or the other pet artist, idea or peeve cherished by the viewer.
December 21, 1993 |
The 1960s was a noisy decade. The volume got turned way up, requiring earplugs for the head and for the heart. Bombs fell, bullets flew. Social unrest blared. So did music. Postwar babies boomed into a raucous youth movement. Culture popped. Amid this loud and blustering torrent, Vija Celmins fell silent. Deeply, profoundly, gorgeously silent.