“The Paintings of Joan Mitchell”
at the Whitney Museum of American Art
New York. June 20-September 29, 2002

“The Paintings of Joan Mitchell,” a retrospective exhibition of the American Abstract Expressionist (1926-1992), gives devotees of painting an opportunity to do something unusual—visit the Whitney Museum of American Art. That may seem like a cheap shot—it was only last spring, after all, that the museum hosted a rewarding show of paintings by Jacob Lawrence. And it should be noted that the Whitney has, in recent years, presented other important exhibitions of painting; one thinks in particular of those devoted to Richard Diebenkorn, Mark Rothko, Arthur Dove, and Florine Stettheimer. Yet even a cursory observer of the scene knows that painting—and, for that matter, art—isn’t the Whitney’s thing. Razzmatazz is. Ever willing to validate the latest transgression, t ...