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Friday, December 17, 2004

Friday December 17, 2004

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 PM
Christmas Dance at Taos

One grows used to the weather,
The landscape and that;
And the sublime comes down
To the spirit itself,

The spirit and space,
The empty spirit
In vacant space.

— Wallace Stevens,
"The American Sublime"

The Times Online on the artist Agnes Martin,
who died Dec. 16 in Taos, New Mexico:

"At a glance, or from a distance, her work looks like nothing at all. Square canvases are so palely touched with colour they might almost be blank. Considered slowly and carefully and close-up, however, the whole surface comes alive."

"The restraint and formal regularity of Martin’s work has led her often to be grouped with the Minimalists. She shares something of their self-effacing rigour and their concern with the material qualities of art, but she herself preferred to be seen in the context of the Abstract Expressionist painters who were her own contemporaries and early artistic models. Like them she may have seen abstract art as the means to a distinctively American sublime…."

"Taos had been a magnet for artists since the last years of the 19th century. D. H. Lawrence famously spent time there in the 1920s. 'Never shall I forget the Christmas dances at Taos,' he wrote, 'twilight, snow, the darkness coming over the great wintry mountains and the lonely pueblo.'"

Related material:

Pictures of Nothing,

Balanchine's Birthday.

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