CCS Bard Hessel Museum

As an undergraduate, I took a survey course in art since 1945. The course followed a predictable, almost teleological progression, as Abstract Expressionism was succeeded by Color Field painting, Pop, Minimalism, Conceptualism, and . . . and then, sometime in the ’70s, everything fell apart. Suddenly, just as the course was coming to an end, just as we were breaking upon the present, the satisfactions of identifiable stylistic and intellectual currents wore out. Our professor characterized this moment as one of pluralism, introducing it as the consequence of our contemporary condition (postmodernism in its “weak” sense, as opposed to the “strong” version associated with Pictures artists, etc., a subject left out of this course’s purview). And pluralism was a big downer.

“A/drift,” an “exhibition-as-allegory” in the words of its curator, Joshua Decter, cast a wide net in what seems like an

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