New York

Helen Mayer Harrison and Newton Harrison

Ronald Feldman Gallery

On the other hand, there are Helen and Newton Harrison. Their show attempted to fuse what may be considered as art with what is not art. And without a tinge of irony or humor. As it turns out, the art part is absolutely dispensable, while the rest is of considerable interest. The Harrisons “work” with earth, performing reclamations of wastes, for instance, moving compost materials into barren areas of upper New York State. (The fact that the land is in Artpark is irrelevant.) These areas will be seeded to become “variable meadows” of trees, berry patches and orchard. (One wonders who, if anyone, will harvest them?) Now the fact that this activity may be art rather than farming is the least interesting thing about it. Its presentation as art is entirely superfluous, while the gallery presentation, with its grade-school textbook cursive script and on-the-scene photographs of the proceedings

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the April 1978 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.