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PRINT May 1999

US News

the Whitney Biennale

REVIEWING THE WHITNEY BIENNIAL of American Art has gotten to be something like playing a round of golf just to get rid of pent-up aggression. Let’s see, which club will we whack the vulnerable little ball with this year? If the play is from the middle of the art-market fairway, as it was in Klaus Kertess’s 1995 show, we could reach for the “Chic Gallery Old Boys’ Network” wood and drive that sucker right through Matthew Marks’s plate glass window. If we’re in the politically correct rough (on the left, of course), as we were in 1993, we could grab the “Politics Make For Ugly Art” iron and enjoy digging a nice divot in the turf of the putatively marginalized “Other.” And if the allegedly national (but in fact LA and NYC heavy) biennial of two years back seems about as sea-to-shining-sea as a New York City subway token, we might take a cut with our “New York Parochialism” wedge and get the

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