October 2011


In order to complete work on major projects, we have suspended full publication of Aristos until further notice. Meanwhile, we will be posting dated commentary and news items on this page each month.

2011: August / September / November / December
2012: January / February / June

10/26 - WORTH READING: For Opera Buffs
"Is This Great Opera That I See Before Me?" Heather Mac Donald, City Journal, August 30, 2011. About a "brilliant staging" of Verdi's Macbeth in Salzburg. Mac Donald won a retroactive Aristos Award for "The Abduction of Opera" (2007).

10/4 - EXHIBITION: Who Cares about Caro?
Anthony Caro on the Roof [more], Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, through October 30, 2011. The sad truth about the work of "the most influential and prolific British sculptor of his generation and a key figure in the development of modernist sculpture over the last sixty years" (to quote the Met) is that ordinary people tend to ignore it. On the lovely summer day when we visited the exhibition, the Met's roof garden was crowded with people chatting and enjoying views of the Manhattan skyline and Central Park, but almost no one was paying attention to Caro's six abstract constructions [more] [Caro himself on the roof].

First prize for pretentiousness must go to the Odalisque [more]. According to the Met (which owns it), "the ample forms and voluptuous curves of the sculpture correspond to the image of a sensuous harem concubine suggested by the title." Really? No one but an artworld insider would make such a preposterous claim. As usual, the hoi polloi know better.

Now this Odalisque [more] (1841) by the Swiss-born French sculptor James Pradier is a different story. We suspect that many visitors would give it more than a passing glance.