Bruce Mclean

Kunsthalle Basel

This was the first large one-man exhibit of the work of the English artist Bruce McLean. Nena Dimitrijevic, who collaborated with the artist in editing the book that accompanied the exhibition, refers to McLean’s beginnings at the St. Martin’s School, and the once avant-garde theories on sculpture of English artists and teachers (especially those of Anthony Caro) actually do provide clues to the contradiction and ironic amusement in McLean’s attitude toward august claims for art. To those familiar with his earlier work, this exhibition of Mclean’s recent “paintings” was initially surprising. In the context of the present triumph of a subjectively formed, expressive painting gesture, there was a danger of misunderstanding. Could it be that this painter/performance artist, who formerly staged irritating elements of reality, had fallen prey to the emotional trend? Anyone unable to tell by

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