New York

“California Realists”

Los Angeles doesn't keep its junk, it throws it into trash compactors and makes land fills or ocean sewage. The man-made things are new, shiny plastic and clean, not at all unlike the “new” Texas. San Franciscans look down upon all this, but get a kick out of the automobiles, tackiness, and technology. It's this perverse love/hate which turns “California Realists” (John Berggruen Gallery) into such a popular show. It's another example of the misguided idea of an idea for an exhibition. Please read “Los Angeles” for “California,” so we laugh at the excesses and still relate to the pleasure. Unlike Texas and “Poets of the Cities,” there are no gems to compensate for the mass of sleek, vapid images produced as nonutilitarian furniture for banks and law offices. There is no reason to argue with the show's many admirers about the “subtle” differences between “realism” and “realist” or the

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