reviews

  • “Navajo Arts and Crafts Guild”

    M. H. de Young Memorial Museum

    Authentic Navajo Indian rugs and silver jewelry from the reservations in northern New Mexico shown under the auspices of a tribal enterprise organized in 1941 with head­quarters in Window Rock, Arizona. Num­bering about 90,000 persons, the Nava­jos are the largest Indian tribe in the United States and as such have retained many of their tribal arts. Experts at weaving, they borrowed the skill about the beginning of the 18th century from the neighboring Pueblo Indians, who had acquired sheep from the early Spanish colonists. Weaving was a man’s craft among the Pueblos, but the Navajos delegated

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  • Fred Sauls

    Lewis & Vidal Gallery, Wal­nut Creek

    The contemporary art­ist who will not serve, who writes, paints, sculpts with the voice of history instead of the dead hand of the past, speaks for the Existentialist Now from anti-fear of new forms––economic, social, political, cultural. But he also reveals himself as a lone and angry wolf with anarchist in­clinations and a Marxist pedigree. Out­raged by the cancerous failures of preceding generations still with us, at those conventions and institutions that have led civilization to the periphery of de­struction, he evaluates the condition of the unloved men of the muckhole city (where Diana

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  • John Roeder

    Richmond Art Center

    Naive sculpture, garden decorations and other objects. A small postscript to the extensive retrospective of Roeder’s painting and sculpture presented here two years ago, this exhibition concen­trates mainly on the artist’s minor works. A retired gardener, Roeder made many of these pieces for his own gar­den (soon to be destroyed); and it is the gardener’s media he uses––cement, broken flower pots and shells, twigs and leaves. Although the work is uneven in quality and much of it is repetitious, even at its worst it reveals a truly inven­tive decorative sense. Moreover, apart from its engaging

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  • Mordecai Gorelik

    University Art Gal­lery, U.C.

    Four decades of designs for the theatre. This exhibition reveals the multi-faceted problems Gorelik encoun­tered in designing for the stage but it does not do justice to his artistic achievements. Its major failing is that it presents Gorelik primarily as a drafts­man rather than as a stage designer. In effect it focuses on his weakness in­stead of his strength, for his concepts rarely communicate theatrically (hence artistically) until they are realized on stage. The show actually faults its sub­ject twice over. Not only does it miss the point in establishing Gorelik’s real me­dium, it also

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  • “Six British Print­makers”

    Eric Locke Gallery

    An exhibition of six British Print­makers at the Eric Locke Gallery, one of the most durable of the smaller scenes which, one might add, performs a unique service to the community in that it is the only gallery devoted pri­marily to contemporary prints, both in quality and quantity. The exhibition has a peculiarly British look, sometimes a backward one, although the selection is far too sparse to make general com­ments on the awakening of contempo­rary British printmakers of which we have heard. (Where are Alan Davies, Ceri Richards, Anthony Gross, and others?) From this representation, it is

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  • Grover Macleod

    Edward Quill Gal­lery

    Dr. Macleod doubles as a dentist. The paintings reflect his craftsman’s pre-occupation with technique. At this time, Macleod’s works lack a certain surety and consistency which should materialize as he paints more.

    James Monte

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  • Bedri Rahmi Eyuboglu, Kenneth Cox, Laura Andreson

    Boyd Gallery

    Eyuboglu is a Turkish painter who ex­hibits the influences of both Matisse and Picasso. He enriches the picture plane with texture that reminds one of rich textiles, Byzantine mosaics and the crumbly surfaces of old, old buildings. Kenneth Cox paints small decorative still lifes which are visually pleasant. Laura Andreson is the chairman of the Ceramics Department at U.C.L.A. Her small pots on display here show a technical virtuosity both tasteful and utilitarian.

    James Monte

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  • William Bowman

    Green Gallery

    Rela­tively small wall constructions composed of tin cans, wire, wood, buttons, nails, pins, electronic components and, sometimes, paint are on view at the Green Gallery. Social protest is implied in some pieces; The Red Door is such a one. This construction has a door which, when opened, reveals a bold-faced sign on the reverse side: Bomb. After the lettering has been read, one is con­fronted with electrical parts somberly arranged to infer that this is the trig­gering mechanism.

    James Monte

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  • Ruth Dicker

    The Horse's Mouth Gallery

    The encaustic technique is used in the major portion of these works. Miss Dicker studied with Carl Zerbe who has been using this practice for many years. The paintings range in style from sche­matic representation to totally abstract evocations of landscapes. The latest abstract works have a restrained surface quality wholly in keeping with the me­dium used.

    James Monte

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  • Tom Hall

    New Image Gallery

    Super­-refined wall constructions designed like shadow boxes is this gallery’s genteel offering for November. Hall arranges 19th-century memorabilia much as an archeologist might design his specimens for display. The jewel-like finish of the boxes contrasts oddly with the old photos, combs, dummy body parts and other unlikely stuff set on them. The compositions are intended to be esthetic and they stand or fall on that basis alone. There is no shock or protest im­plied by any of these constructions-­cum-assemblage.

    James Monte

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  • Claude Weisbuch, Bernard Buf­fet, Sayed Raza, Emil Lazarevich

    Lanyon Gallery

    Weisbuch paints mono­chromatic figure studies that are unim­pressive. Buffet is represented by two fine early still lifes. Raza is at present guest instructor at the University of Cali­fornia in Berkeley. His paintings reflect the currently fashionable Parisian ab­stract idiom. Lazarevich has a solid sculptural touch in these small concrete works on display.

    James Monte

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  • Geoffrey Lewis

    Nut Tree, Hwy. 40

    Geoffrey Lewis (b. 1928, San Francisco) is one of those artists who seem to have transmigrated from pre-Renaissance Italy. His work, mostly landscape here, has the timeless quality of pure classicism.

    E. M. Polley

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  • Group Show

    Pomeroy Galleries

    The vast reach of representational art is shown here by Pomeroy’s select group of suave European and American artists. Primitive Grandma Moses and college­ trained Lundy Siegriest are at the oppo­site ends of the roster, one with a ginger­bread landscape, the other with a near abstraction.

    E. M. Polley

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  • Mario Agostinelli and Stanley Long

    Maxwell Galleries

    Born in Peru of Italian parents, Agostinelli combines Latin setiment with Indian pathos in portraitiz­ing his homeland. Long’s illustrative watercolors of range life were completely sold out in this show. San Franciscans like horses.

    E. M. Polley

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  • Group Show

    Art Unlimited

    Illustrative interpretations by four commercial artists, Earl Thollander, Dick Moore, Bill Shields and Willi Baum, who recently camped the state of Sonora, Mexico. Their sites: Nogales, Magdalena, Hermo­sillo, Guaymas and Alamos. They lin­gered longest in Alamos, a little city which was once the silver-mining center of the world. As artist-reporters they have come up with some lively drawings and colorful paintings which have the clean, direct impact of contemporary illustration. Thollander keeps Mexico at a distance with high horizons, thin paint surface and wiry line. Moore separates drawing

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  • Ruth Armer, James Malott, Law­rence Halprin

    Bolles Gallery

    Ruth Armer, whose works fill the large gallery, has ventured from nonobjective painting-collage into figurative landscape with only moderate success. A competent painter, long on the California scene, she lacks the deep psychological pene­tration that makes a show or a work discussable. In this exhibition her non­objectives are her best works, especially those of the “400” series. James Ma­lott’s rugged sculptures complement her work while drawing some attention to themselves. Lawrence Halprin, the land­scape architect, shows naturegrams of the Sierra Nevada region in the Petite Gallery. Using

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  • “Some Points of View––’62”

    Stanford University Art Gallery

    An invitational show by some of the Bay Area’s more famous artists, fortunately running con­currently with a definitive exhibition of “British Art Today” at the San Francisco Museum of Art, discussed elsewhere in this issue and offering some interesting comparisons. Almost all contemporary approaches are evident in each show, from abstract expressionism through ro­mantic realism. On first reaction, the Stanford show seems more concerned with the human figure, but, actually, it has no greater percentage of figure paintings. In fact, neither especially em­phasizes the figure, although a number of

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  • Deborah Rem­ington

    Dilexi Gallery

    It is curious that this is Deborah Rem­ington’s first one-man show. She has shown in the now defunct King Ubu and Six Galleries and is at present an instruc­tor at the San Francisco Art Institute.

    Miss Remington’s paintings are big and bright––even the blacks look bright. They are free without taking advantage of accident. Her palette is almost with­out tertiary color, with reds, yellows, blues and oranges predominating. Her central image throughout all these re­cent works is a highly abstracted land­scape. This underlying current seems to be a vital and reoccurring source of inspiration upon

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  • Walter Snel­grove

    Gump’s Gallery

    Reminiscences of Courbet and Corot and Hudson River landscapists haunt Snel­grove’s latest exhibit. It is as if he sees these painters with the eyes of any one of a number of West Coast neo-figurative artists. This latter group, in turn, uses the figure and landscape as though they were still painting abstract-expressionist pictures. This constant dilution of styles and approaches to styles has made it possible for Snelgrove’s oeuvre to exist. His sensibility is romantic and theatri­cal in the 19th-century sense of both words. He has shrewdly taken the latest technical means (the fast brush,

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  • Richard Van Buren

    New Mission Gallery

    Avant-garde paintings and sculp­ture have become the official art of the United States and that art has been the official international currency for some years. This situation has caused many critics to equate the word, “official” with the words “dead” or “unvital.”

    Disproving this word equation is the constructed-painting of Richard Van Buren. His work falls solidly into the realm of the vanguard and it is ex­tremely vital and startlingly odd. Van Buren uses Disneyland colors with both hard-edge and anthropomorphic shapes throughout the paintings. In the approxi­mate center rests a textured and

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  • Louis Gutierrez and Ralph Pearsall

    Fredrick Hobbs Gallery

    This first one­man show by Louis Gutierrez covers his recent developments. His earliest painting is a colorful seco-surfaced panorama derived from landscape. More recent work limits his palette to blacks and umbers, developing a waxy surface par­tially textured by collage and depending upon value organization more than color orchestration. With it he paints a series on Light as structure, as balance, as organization. “Series painting” has its pitfalls, one of them being that the theory of the masterpiece is weakened: instead of a solid major work representing the culmination of the artist’s

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  • Lee Mullican

    Rose Rabow Gallery

    The clues to Lee Mullican’s latest paint­ings lie in his graphic work. Both his etchings and drawings contain a rich, variegated repertory of shapes that move playfully in and out of landscape space. This space is illusory and not two-dimensional, although the shapes that inhabit the space are a mixture of two and three dimensions.

    This ambiguous use of space is re­peated in the paintings with a few im­portant differences occurring. A screen of one-inch vertical knife strokes, like hundreds of colored paper matches, covers nine-tenths of the canvas. Be­hind this screen, the shapes lie in repose

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  • Alfred O’Shaughnessy

    Studio Ex­hibit

    With this exhibit is marked the emergence of one of the most gifted draftsmen the Bay Area has seen in some time. O’Shaughnessy’s total out­put to date has been drawings, draw­ings which are intensely involved emo­tional experiences. Trapped people, depressed people, soggy and depraved people, vivacious people, haunted peo­ple, all are woven into the fabric of these drawings.

    O’Shaughnessy’s approach to draw­ing falls roughly into two categories. The first is the instant approach; i.e., he will sketch from a given person in a public place as the subject walks, or lifts a glass, or gestures. All

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  • Group Exhibit

    David Cole Gallery

    The high standards which the Cole Gal­lery sets in this exhibition could be emu­lated by other galleries in this area to their great advantage in designing group shows.

    Faralla’s sculpture moves forward with the addition of blackened votive candles placed on the horizontal planes of wood. David Simpson’s Night Boun­dary continues the smooth horizontality with controlled stains that have marked his work for the past few years. Nancy Genn is involved with a personal calligraphy which wriggles over the entire surface of her supports. A truly lovely painting entitled, The Blue Leaves by Art Holman

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  • John Ihle, Richard Heidsiek, Metal Arts Guild

    California Palace of the Legion of Honor

    The quality and variety of John Ihle’s recent works (in the Achenbach Foundation wing), establish him as one of the important printmakers of the West. It is therefore surprising that, although he has been included in many group exhibitions, this is his first one-man show. Formerly an engraver and etcher, he has recently become in­volved with lithography, and in this show has pushed that medium to its extreme so skillfully that technique and image be­come one and the same thing. Ihle does not overlook content, reaching back into cultural anthropology and biology for subject matter and interpreting

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  • Kenneth Callahan

    San Francisco Museum of Art

    The artist, the dealer, the collector and the museum are a formidable combination when their tim­ing and teamwork mesh properly. We have a lovely example of the coalition in the retrospective exhibit given Mr. Kenneth Callahan at the San Francisco Museum of Art.

    The dealer is the Maynard Walker Gal­lery in New York. The collector is Mrs. Emily Winthrop Miles. The Museum is the San Francisco Museum of Art. The dealer deals: he sells droves of Mr. Calla­han’s paintings to Mrs. Miles. Then he writes the catalog: to no one’s surprise, he pronounces his artist “a genius” and his collector a woman of

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  • Bruce Breckenridge

    Richmond Art Center

    The Art Center continues its im­portant series of large scale one-man shows by Bay Area artists. Breckenridge exhibits twenty-three paintings done during the last six months. Most of them are five or six feet in height, close to square in format, composed mainly of large dark color areas basically horizon­tal and vertical in orientation. His work shows a considerable development, dur­ing this half year, from more complex to more simple, from central configuration of color areas in classical abstract fash­ion (in the earlier paintings) to a gradual opening up of the center, into which slightly

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  • Wilfrid Zogbaum

    Worth Ryder Gal­lery, U.C.

    Zogbaum’s sculpture, like all good art, has that most powerful capacity to kindle in our imagination the complicated orchestration of perception, sensation, notion and intuition which we feel to be the innermost and deepest content of art, be it poetry, painting, music or sculpture.

    A Bird in 25 Parts is one work among the many he currently exhibits. In common with all his other works it shares the same noble and fine sculptural touch that consistently dis­tinguishes his art, but in addition, has a certain technical innovation of inter­est. As the name implies, this piece con­sists of twenty-five

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  • Edward Weston

    Oakland Museum of California, Oakland

    The fact that 100 photos by Edward Weston quietly tucked away at the Oakland City Museum are on loan from the Smithsonian Institute is very curious indeed. Is it because no local museum possesses a representa­tive selection of his work? Work, inci­dentally, which is the source, and often enough the sum of the photography done in this area. It has been decades since the serious treatment of photog­raphy was initiated at New York’s Mu­seum of Modern Art.

    A show spanning middle, early and late Weston is particularly interesting because it clearly illustrates his growth as an artist. Unlike Stieglitz,

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  • “Invention and Tradition in Con­temporary Sculpture”

    San Fran­cisco Art Institute

    A new touring exhibi­tion of West Coast sculpture now avail­able for loan, presents visual evidence of the concepts of tradition and inven­tion which became polemical in the late 19th century and are still debated. The thought behind the assembling of it is to urge a more objective view before either degrading or exalting the sculpture of today. It is a stimulating show, where sense often becomes nonsense, and nonsense embraces more sense than is sometimes immediately apparent. One hardly knows where to begin a review––every piece merits discussion because it bears on a general as well as a

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  • “Ancient Gods and Monarchs”

    M. H. de Young Memorial Mu­seum

    Exquisite little bronzes from vari­ous Egyptian, Greek and Roman periods serving to illustrate the history of bronze casting from its earliest stages, and in­dicate the tastes of their times. Kings and deities predominate, but animals are also portrayed in strangely 20th­-century idioms. Scraps of ancient Coptic tapestry with designs stemming, under­standably enough, from Babylonian rather than Egyptian art lend depth to the show. Among the Egyptian sculp­tures of Osiris, Isis. lmehotep and Sek­hemet are bronzes produced from Saitic through Greek times (seventh century B. C. to first century A.

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  • Diego Rivera

    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)

    Rivera began his artistic career in Mexico at a time when an anemic 19th-century academic school of art was the art in Mexico. Between 1907 and 1909 and again between 1912 and 1921 Rivera lived in Europe where he was closely associated with the cubist masters––Picasso in particular––and an avid student of the works in the Louvre. In 1921 Rivera returned to North America loaded with the new bag­gage from the old world. Among the trappings was a promised new way of life for the downtrodden Indian masses; Rivera returned a Marxist. He quickly made the decision that what Mexico needed was a colloquial

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