Curt Opliger

  • Forms and Faces of Primitive Sculpture

    Harry A. Franklin has mounted an exhibition of primitive sculpture of such excellence as to be nearly without equal in commercial gallery circles and rivals many museum efforts. It is first of all composed of only the finest examples and secondly the range of material is both impressive and illuminating. Drawn from pre-eminent and obscure primitive cultures around the globe, the ancestor figures, totems, dance masks, fetishes, house lintels, etc., emphasize the vast inventiveness of the unsophisticated intellect when describing the human face. Prescribed by traditions, predicated by environmental

  • Benton Scott

    It does not follow that an artist who refuses to participate in the frantic race from one innovation to another, a practice generally applauded by critics and buyers today, is necessarily in a rut. The prospects for exploration by artists dedicated to a more confined philosophy are equally promising though perhaps not as exhilarating for either the artist or his following. Satisfaction there must be, though, for many fine artists who by comparison demonstrate a very limited horizon but continue to survive and appear to suffer no serious debility as a result.

    Benton Scott is one of these artists

  • Peter Saul

    Peter Saul appears to be a very troubled young man in many ways and a troub­led young painter in more. During his eight year residence in Europe, Saul has evolved a Rube Goldberg cartoon style of presentation with which he attempts too many things at one time. From across the ocean Saul aims his arrows at American comics, advertis­ing, TV, pulp magazines, capital punishment, sexual hypocrisy, momism, po­lice graft, etc. Apparently prompted by violent indignation and anger, they fall short of their target, for anger is not an ingredient of his pictures. He employs funny visual symbols such as

  • Karl Benjamin

    Few directions in contemporary art can be directly associated with this geographic area. There were the California watercolor regionalists decades ago, and more currently, the indelible Lebrun legacy, but none seems more persistent, more determined to exhaust every possible nuance than the so-­called Hard-Edge group. Some devotees have adhered to the purely classic con­structions of McLaughlin or Feitelson, while others have permitted romantic­ism to add an essence of drama, such as Hammersley. It has made strong contributions toward certain Pop con­structions while also donating formal attitudes

  • Robert Hansen

    The list of artists once devoted to a single medium but currently experimenting with every conceivable material con­tinues to grow and grow. Sculptors blessed with one-man exhibitions today usually include in their display not only preliminary sketches for the three­-dimensional objects, but finished paint­ings and prints as well.

    Robert Hansen who possesses a solid reputation as a painter has re­cently expanded into the field of litho­graphy through a Tamarind Workshop Fellowship awarded him this year, and also has cast a few bronze sculptures. Hansen moves into the monochromatic prints easily

  • Arthur Oka­mura

    The diversified character of selec­tions included in young Arthur Oka­mura’s second one-man show at the Feingarten Galleries really does more harm than good. Where usually such a wealth of disparate media might de­monstrate the scope of the artist’s in­terests or proficiency, in this case it accents areas of decided weakness. However, in the midst of the oils, wa­tercolors, crayon, pastel, and pen and ink drawings, etc., there are pieces which certainly demonstrate the artist’s firm control of most of them, and often manifest his knowledgeable and versa­tile application in obtaining aggressive

  • Franz Rederer

    Swiss expressionist Franz Reder­er possesses one of the surest brush strokes in action today. A lifetime of devotion to his art has culminated in an assurance which seems to leave little to be desired except that solutions now come easily, creating a predictable for­mula of execution almost without chal­lenge to the artist. Experimentation is no longer of apparent interest or im­portance. Characterizations in many of the large portraits seem weak, but em­phatic praise must be tendered to well-controlled spatial-effects and rather brilliant composing of the canvases.

    Rederer’s palette is repetitious.

  • “Arts of New Guinea”

    Unlike the Western artist, the primitive carver gained little from skilled performance alone. His profession was ordained through a variety of circumstances over which he often had no control. In the Mundugumor area of New Guinea, artists were always born with the umbilical cord wrapped around their necks and believed to be immune to danger. In spite of this curious method of selection, the would-be artist managed to achieve high levels of performance. This exhibition of primitive art from the Sepik River region of New Guinea, one of the finest collations of bewitching material to go on view in

  • “American Impressionists”

    The final section of the Summer Art Festival presented at the Hatfield Galleries in the Ambassador Hotel concentrates on the American Impressionists and an additional few who, by some stretch of esthetic imagination, might also be expected to relate to the movement.

    Rarely does one find a survey of this kind which establishes within itself such over-all excellence. There is no place here for fill-ins or trivia—the criteria for inclusion is obviously demanding, and in all instances successfully met. One could rarely find a more exemplary George Bellows than The Skeleton. A huge fishing boat is

  • Martin Lubner

    Few galleries in Los Angeles are so readily identified with their artists as the Ceeje. Usually figurative, with loose free brushwork and palettes which concentrate on emphatic blacks, yellows, and reds, pictures seen here are by young uncertain performers whose presences are sometimes ill-advised. Not so 35-year old Martin Lubner who has been the subject of more than half-a-dozen one-man shows in Los Angeles as well as in London and Rome. Though his works adhere to the gallery pattern, his palette is less confined, his stroke stronger and surer, and he employs fewer of the aimless violences

  • John Paul Jones

    Although this area has developed a cult of artists attempting to work in a similar vein, John Paul Jones continues to out-distance the field. Not predilected to sudden changes, Jones manages to ease from one nuance to another with exhilarating invention and without changing his general direction. His mono- and duochromatic settings are still peopled by mysterious beings who stand or float motionless exhibiting pleasant or mildly pugnacious demeanors, as though faintly amused by the antics of foreigners in their land where all the usual means of communication have failed to make contact. They

  • Sterling Holloway Collection

    Two characteristics of this collector strongly inform this admirable exhibition. The first is a fortitudinous patience in waiting for the right piece at the right time and the second is a cavalier indifference to “name” artists. The primary criterion, it is obvious, is the high pleasure to be obtained from possession. This is particularly pronounced in the selection of small pieces. Strombotne, Tobey, Foulkes, Horiuchi and others are represented here by physically small works, but by no means do the modest dimensions reflect a similar stature esthetically. Larger and equally enjoyable are works