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Peter Frank
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Blog Entries by Peter Frank

In Memoriam: Mark Wiener (1951-2012)

(1) Comments | Posted October 9, 2012 | 10:14 AM

Writing about the urban fabric, Jane Jacobs cited what she called "public characters" as humans in the thick of that fabric who find, or appoint, themselves its custodians. Public Characters galvanize and guide communities, through their presence, their example, and their usually tireless interventions. The best of them do it...

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'Visual Chronicles': Braille, Hieroglyphics And The Pictorial Language

(1) Comments | Posted September 12, 2012 | 11:35 AM

An excerpt from 'Visual Chronicles: Art in a literary content,' by saltfineart, Delia Cabral and Peter Frank. The exhibition is on view until September 30, 2012 at saltfineart in Laguna Beach, CA.


One picture, goes the saw, is worth a thousand words. But each...

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Franklyn Liegel Memorial Exhibition Opens At AndrewShire Gallery

(0) Comments | Posted June 25, 2012 | 1:08 PM

When Franklyn Liegel passed away in March of this year, the Los Angeles art world lost one of its most inspiring teachers, gentlest eccentrics, and most underknown talents. A master of color, form, and texture, Liegel was able to fuse paint, drawing media, and collage almost magically into a perfect...

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Lucknow, Sense Later: Mughal India At LACMA, Midcentury South America At MOCA | Blague D'Art

(2) Comments | Posted February 25, 2011 | 2:20 PM

Yesterday's centers are today's outliers. But today's outliers are tomorrow's centers. Who would have thought - from the vantage, at least, of Euro-American superiority - that northern India and various South American cities were vital artistic loci once upon a time? That concept has finally re-entered our thick skulls. Of...

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Blague d'Art: Architecture for the Ears

(9) Comments | Posted February 3, 2011 | 1:25 AM

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IANNIS XENAKIS in his studio, Paris, early 1960s, archival exhibition print, 35 x 35 inches, collection of Francoise Xenakis, Photo by Adelmann

"I call architecture frozen music," Goethe declared. Almost two centuries later, Iannis Xenakis defrosted architecture, and a new kind of music...

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Blague d'Art: Getting (and Going) Out of the Way @ LACMA

(1) Comments | Posted January 11, 2011 | 6:17 AM

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WILLIAM EGGLESTON, Untitled, from Paramount Pictures, 2000, Ink jet print, 30 x 24 inches, (c)Eggleston Artistic Trust, Memphis, courtesy Cheim & Read, New York

We have to take William Eggleston at his word: his photographs may be primarily about the American South, but...

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Blague d'Art: Goldberg's Variations

(1) Comments | Posted December 15, 2010 | 1:56 PM

Friends with a vast circle of artists and culturati, passionate and yet logical about his "job" as a maker of paintings, Michael Goldberg was the emblem of a mid-century New York that (to use Yvonne Rainer's phrase) regarded the mind as a muscle. The six decades of paintings he left...

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Blague d'Art: American Masters, American Dreams

(7) Comments | Posted November 2, 2010 | 8:13 AM

"What are masterpieces?" asked Gertrude Stein in the very title of one of her best known books. "What is mastery?" she could have been asking. Can one separate the art from its maker, the dancer (as Yeats asked in turn) from the dance? A masterpiece can only be made, logically,...

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Blague d'Art: Moving Pictures, Frozen Music

(5) Comments | Posted October 18, 2010 | 11:39 PM

Is the medium still the message? Is it still possible to admire and evaluate the mediation of experience, or are we so far inside that mediation that our lives are no longer distinct from it? Is the unexamined medium not worth living? Then perhaps one of art's principal purposes is...

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Blague d'Art: Brion Gysin, Together at Last

(3) Comments | Posted October 2, 2010 | 10:27 AM

Brion Gysin did indeed let the mice in (as one of his books proclaims in its title). Known now mostly as cohort to William S. Burroughs, Gysin was the one who introduced Burroughs to the cut-up method. He was also a writer, a painter, a poet, a "sound poet," a...

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Blague d'Art: Star Qualities

(13) Comments | Posted September 21, 2010 | 5:37 PM

The Los Angeles art world's discomfort with the idea of Jeffrey Deitch -- not the reality, mind you, the idea -- came to a head this summer when poor Jeffrey played into our worst expectations, or at least he seemed to. Discounting the bulk of his 35-year career -- during...

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Blague d'Art: First Impressions

(7) Comments | Posted September 20, 2010 | 3:10 AM

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ALFRED SISLEY, The Barge During the Flood, Port-Marly, 1876, Oil on canvas, 19 7/8 x 24 inches

Impressionism is art's easiest sell, at least nowadays. What once was taken as an affront to propriety is now regarded as the most natural and pleasing...

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Blague d'Art: Dix's Mix (No Quick Fix)

(7) Comments | Posted August 24, 2010 | 11:48 AM

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OTTO DIX, Group Portrait: Guenther Franke, Paul Ferdinand Schmidt, and Karl Nierendorf, 1923, Oil on canvas, 15 3/4 x 29 1/8 inches, Nationalgalerie, Berlin

Olaf Peters calls the representational, highly topical style of painter Otto Dix "intransigent realism." In this, Peters marvels at...

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Blague d'Art: Up Against the Walls

(2) Comments | Posted August 4, 2010 | 12:25 PM

Do Felipe Ehrenberg and Carolee Schneemann know each other personally? It's likely, given their association with so many of the most adventurous artistic phenomena of the recent past -- happenings, Fluxus, conceptual art, street theater, feminism, identity aesthetics, etc. -- and their treatment of these phenomena not simply as artistic...

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Blague d'Art: Wiley and the Beuys

(0) Comments | Posted July 15, 2010 | 3:32 AM

Summer is the perfect time to visit any museum anywhere, and museums know it, putting on some of their best shows of the year. But in California this season the museums offerings are notably magnificent, not to mention manifold. As summer shows are wont to do, many if not most...

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Blague d'Art: Everything Old

(5) Comments | Posted July 7, 2010 | 3:25 PM

Yesterday's hot items are today's history, obviously enough, but today's history is also today's hot item. I marvel continually at the rediscovery of painters who made a splash three to four decades ago and then eased their way to the margins to allow younger folk the limelight. Sure, there is...

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Blague d'Art: Out There

(17) Comments | Posted June 16, 2010 | 3:50 AM

We talk urgently about what's in the galleries, but the not-so-dirty little secret is that, no matter how dynamic, progressive, and ambitious an art scene is, its heartbeat and its intellect do not reside first and foremost in its commercial outlets. Not in America's cities, certainly. There's plenty of interesting...

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Blague d'Art: At LACMA a Little Too Lately

(0) Comments | Posted May 25, 2010 | 2:10 PM

Should this blog provide consumers guidance or post-facto commentary? I'd like to think it could do both, but timelines and deadlines and laugh lines and Nazca lines and whatever lines I can hand you have a way of diverging, leaving me enthusing or fuming over an all-too-precipitously expired show or...

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Blague d'Art: LA Galleray Array in May

(0) Comments | Posted May 12, 2010 | 1:42 PM

You're still owed one (1) Euro-report, but first a string of Los Angeles recommendations, especially as these shows are ending imminently. In fact, it's almost too late to catch Naomie Kremer's paintings and "hybrids" and the marquetry paintings of Paulin Paris (at Frank Pictures, Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave. #A5,...

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Blague d'art: Frank vs. the Volcano

(0) Comments | Posted May 4, 2010 | 2:36 PM

This comes in about a week late and doesn't discuss any exhibitions, but otherwise it's a genuine Blague d'Art. All blague, no art. I'm still recovering from a near-fortnight spent in Europe - falling out around 9 pm, ravenous at 4 in the morning - but what I'm really recovering...

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