|Nude Study, oil pastel, 10" X 7", 2016|
I recently saw a large juried group exhibition at a major Smithsonian museum. The theme of the show was contemporary portraiture. Drawings and paintings made up about half of the show. I toured the exhibition with a group of friends whose combined art knowledge could fill a dense volume. The consensus opinion was that the show failed in some deep-rooted way. The reasons given were varied but for me the main explanation was clear. Virtually every drawing and painting in the show shouted photo sourced! Many were expertly rendered but almost without exception they were lifeless.
As disappointing as the drawings and paintings were the photography also came up short. I will explore that topic in the next post.