Tuesday, December 4, 2012


Guess who painted this. Franz Kline that's who! Puppet in the Paintbox is from 1940, and - consciously or not - is the perfect embodiment of the breaking point of the depression-era WPA artists who were obliged to conform to the uplifting pictorialist conventions of Social Realism. Pretty soon Action Pinnochio was prancing, stringless - slashing and daubing his way to a brave new orthodoxy whose conventions, prohibitions, and sense of self-righteousness would dwarf those of the picturebook commies of the previous generation. That's what I'm talking about when I talk about Freedom!

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