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Other Criteria: Confrontations with Twentieth Century Art

Leo Steinberg, Other Criteria, Confrontations With Twentieth Century Art (New York: Oxford University Press), 1972, 436 Pages, 278 Black-and-white Illustrations.

You can, as an artist, try to say something big about life; or be content to make the stuff in your hands come to life. And this humbler task is the greater, for all else merely follows.

—Other Criteria

AS A BOOK MODE, the collection of a critic’s occasional essays tends to be unjustly neglected or condescended to. Prejudices in these matters run in favor of the substantial thesis, the monograph, the survey, the in-depth or the full-scale, as if solid contributions come only in a Sunday dress form. But time and again, it is the shorter, less assuming and considered, but on-the-spot and immediate exercise in critical judgment that lives in the literature. And there is no contest between the typical reading attractions of the two

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