new-york

Nancy Spero

Galerie Lelong & Co., New York

The timely resurrection of Nancy Spero’s passionate antiwar imagery—produced nearly four decades ago against the backdrop of the conflict in Vietnam—seemed a thinly veiled reminder that history repeats itself. To view Spero’s “War Series 1966–70” without simultaneously considering the current political climate simply wasn’t possible; and the remarkable fact that these vibrant, scatological gouache-and-ink paintings on paper had never been shown in the United States raised larger questions about artistic production and censorship during political crises past and present.

These works were designed to agitate, and time has done little to wear away that effect. Fuck, 1966, features a hoard of repugnant, ravenous missiles each branded with a corporate-looking f.u.c.k. logo gobbling down the naked, bloodied bodies of unarmed civilian victims; in Love to Hanoi, 1967, a malignant nuke belches toxins

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