Monday, February 01, 2010

Moma Muddle

The Tim Burton show at the Moma is a real crowd Pleaser, which is exactly what's wrong with it. After about 2 minutes in this funhouse that wasn't much fun, I fled. Exactly what was the point of this show, I mean Burton can sometimes make fun movies, although he slaughtered Sweeney Todd for all time. But why give him a show highlighting his crappy doodles, sketches and very bad paintings that look like the kind of stuff that high school kids draw in their notebooks while listening to boring teachers drone on an on about subjects that they could care less about. The exhibit is crowded and housed in a small dimly lit space, and I kept tripping over tiny tots. The installation is crowded with props, models and other stuff that I guess we are suppose to be interested in, because they allow us into the mind of the filmmaker and show us how he did what he did. Put it in a book where it belongs, and not on the walls of one of the leading art museums in the world. Maybe Burton paid out of his own deep pockets for this offense. If The Museum Of Modern Art wants to honor a filmmaker and his vision why not a show of Fellini's or Kurosawa's drawings. The other big show now on at this shopping mall of modern art is a retrospective of the Mexican artist Gabriel Orozco who I have to admit I never heard of. It seems that he’s one of the darlings of the international art scene, so after only 10 or so years of making art, he gets this big retrospective which is uneven to say the least. At least there is lots of room to roam and take in his delicate dull small collages, and vapid paintings, since everyone is downstairs at the Burton show. It’s full of the usual smart-ass stuff that is all the rage in many of the galleries and museums. Oh look an empty show box. It sits on the floor at the entrance of the show; a bored looking guard watching over it like it was some priceless gem. It’s a fucking empty shoebox for Christ’s sake. Then there are his ordinary “conceptual” color photographs of a yellow motorcycle that he bought and placed in various locations, wasn’t stuff like this done in the early 70’s? Also on view is a large sculpture of bicycle wheels that I just walked by, and a car sawed in half and welded back together. Far out. To be fair I did like his table of small clay sculptures and models for larger works that he calls working tables but these were not really worthy of a full-scale retrospective. When I heard that the Moma was going to have a retrospective for Orozco I of course immediately thought of the great Mexican muralist José Clemente Orozco, now that would have been some show.


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