“Mutual Regards; 1974-2010” at Columbia University

Joyce Robins, Concave Intersecting Circles (2008), clay, glaze and paint; 12″ x 17″ x 3″; courtesy the artist

* * *

You wouldn’t believe the flak I got from colleagues, fellow artists and, less so, students for praising Thomas Nozkowski’s last show at Pace Gallery. Taste is subjective, of course, but nothing prepared me for the vitriol I suffered–yes, suffered!–for praising Nozkowski’s “confounding, funny and evocative vision”. Given the regard I have for some of the folks giving me the business, I revisited the Pace show several times in veritable frenzies of self-doubt. But you know what? Nozkowski’s paintings looked better upon each subsequent trip. Go figure. Sometimes great minds don’t think alike.

So, I’ll keep my mouth shut about Mutual Regards; 1974-2010, an exhibition pairing Nozkowski and Joyce Robins, a ceramic artist of no mean gifts and Nozkowski’s wife–at least, that is, until I see the show. In the meantime, there’s a certain mild irony to be found in its venue: The Leroy Neiman Gallery.

© 2011 Mario Naves

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