Layers Of Calm At Bowdoin: Pousette-dart Goes Deeper

Richard Pousette-Dart, "Radiance Number 8 (Imploding Light Red)," 1973-74, oil on linen. © 2017 Estate of Richard Pousette-Dart/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photograph by Kerry Ryan McFate, courtesy of Pace Gallery.


FEATURED MUSEUM
RICHARD POUSETTE-DART: PAINTING/LIGHT/SPACE
BOWDOIN COLLEGE MUSEUM OF ART
245 MAINE STREET
BRUNSWICK, MAINE
THROUGH SEPTEMBER 16
by Greg Morell

An idyllic and incredibly expensive prestigious liberal arts college, Maine’s Bowdoin College boasts a fabulous art museum. The campus and the museum reek of history, gorgeous architecture and a gleefully rich endowment.

The current direction of the museum is the hands of three refugees from Washington’s Smithsonian. Most uniquely, the titular heads of the institution, the co-directors, are actually a husband and wife team. The concept of co-direction is familiar to me in football and sports, but most surprising in the world of aesthetics and art.

I was able to interview co-director Anne Collins Goodyear on my recent visit, as her husband Frank was away at a photography caucus in Rochester, New York.

My efforts to glean the future vision of the museum were best summed up as “Developing the institution as a creative laboratory, a place to play with ideas and take risks.” Goodyear sees the museum as an incubator of creativity. The ambition is noble, the method remains a mystery.

At the curatorial helm of the museum is a German emigre who bikes to work despite the extreme challenges of Maine weather. Curator Joachim Homann has presented the remarkable work of Richard Pousette-Dart in a clever presentation of eight major paintings and an assortment of drawings and smaller ephemera. The effort was to capsule the man as well as the work.

Pousette-Dart was a prime mover in the wave of New York art practitioners who revolutionized the art world, re-inventing painting and moving the capital of the art world from Paris to New York City. In that wave of avant-garde abstract expressionism and wild experimentation that was the momentum of the 1960s, Pousette-Dart stands in stark comparison.

To read more, pick up a copy of our latest issue! Find a pick-up location near you or Subscribe Here.

Share: