Category Commentary

More Than Meets the Eye

I have not lived in Owosso for more than forty years now, but on the morning of 9 October 2012, I came for a visit. While here I walked around the old neighborhood I’d grown up in. As I approached the corner of Park and Comstock streets I saw beneath an American flag an A-frame […]

The Enlightened Window

A little after 2:00 p.m., on 15 December 2005, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, I photographed the front window of Evangelo’s Cocktail Bar. It displayed a melange of images taped and painted on the pane, including: a partial events calendar, a cash only sign, an ice blue and yellow hand-painted welcome star or flower, a […]

Line is Fundamental and It Doesn’t Exist

Line is fundamental in the visual arts. It is a principle element in design. Yet there is no line in nature. It is an epiphenomenon like the shadow—something perceived as being but which is actually the byproduct of something else. The simplest definition of a line is a mark that stretches between two points and […]

A Contemporary Art Museum?

The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum, which is located on the campus of Michigan State University, is, quoting their website, “Expressly dedicated to exploring contemporary culture and ideas through the probing gaze of international artists, the MSU Broad is a place where artists’ ideas, words, and actions create a vibrant center for questioning and […]

Art That Matters

It is not for me to decide the value of my art except in regard to my personal standards of art and art making. I will know what I think of the work—whether or not it satisfies me. But I cannot perceive what other people perceive. I do not see with their eyes. I cannot […]

Photos In A Suitcase

Not long ago I read French author Patrick Modiano’s novella, After Image. It tells the story of a photographer in Paris who wanted to disappear. He kept his photos, in no particular order, in three suitcases, as he moved about constantly, disappearing for long periods of time—a mystery to all who knew him and perhaps himself. Was he […]

Agnes, Awe and Inspiration

On the fourth floor of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, almost hidden away, there is a small gallery in which hang seven paintings by Agnes Martin. This past November I sat there in bliss. “ Art is the concrete representation of our most subtle feelings.” Agnes Martin Martin’s paintings are not clever. They […]