Pittsburgh

Patti Smith

The Andy Warhol Museum

Any number of important musicians and writers have produced interesting visual art. Victor Hugo made drawings, Auguste Strindberg painted landscapes, Arnold Schönberg did portraits. And, of course, Antonin Artaud’s drawings are famous. Rock icon Patti Smith aspires to this tradition and presented a dense installation of some eighty-five drawings in two galleries. Among the works, which dated from the late ’60s to this year, were a 1973 drawing of her hero, Rimbaud; a number of self-portraits; Three Studies for sculpture, ca. 1980; various Ascension scenes showing Christ surrounded by rising lines; and her Portrait of Robert Mapplethorpe for Robert Miller, 1978.

Smith draws in faint, hard-to-see pencil but often adds color and language to her works. Some have observed, in fact, that her technique seems modeled after Artaud’s, since her rough-hewn lines similarly pretend to provide a pathway

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