Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism
Modern Art is antique.
Modern Art is old.
Modern Art is so last century.
Modern Art is an oxymoron, neither modern nor art.

Modern Art Criticism walking men

Modern Art: An Exhibition is Criticism is a book of
invective,
satire,
mudslinging,
ridicule,
and other devices of respectable pedigree.

Modern Art Criticism men backwards

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism is
a jokebook,
a critique,
a history,
a biography,
a gem of the poet’s craft.

Modern Art black

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism is a lesson in
wounding your enemy.

Modern Art white

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism is available
here,
there, through The National Civic Art Society.

Modern Art looking

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism is a book you should own.

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism has a pedigree
in invective; this from W. Shakespeare:

            A knave; a rascal; an eater of broken meats; a
            base, proud, shallow, beggarly, three-suited,
            hundred-pound, filthy, worsted-stocking knave; a
            lily-livered, action-taking knave, a whoreson,
            glass-gazing, super-serviceable finical rogue;
            one-trunk-inheriting slave; one that wouldst be a
            bawd, in way of good service, and art nothing but
            the composition of a knave, beggar, coward, pandar,
            and the son and heir of a mongrel bitch: […]

                                    -from Shakespeare’s King Lear

Modern Art

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism has a pedigree
in satire; this from J. Swift:     

            And could he be indeed so old
            As by the newspapers we’re told?

            Threescore, I think, is pretty high;
            ’Twas time in conscience he should die
            This world he cumbered long enough;
            He burnt his candle to the snuff;
            And that’s the reason, some folks think,
            He left behind so great a stink …

                                    from J. Swift’s “A Satirical Elegy on the Death of a Late Famous General”

Modern Art

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism has a pedigree
in hyperbole; this from W.H. Auden:

            I’ll love you, dear, I’ll love you
            Till China and Africa meet,
            And the river jumps over the mountain
            And the salmon sing in the street.

                                    -from “As I Walked Out One Evening”

Modern Art Criticism down

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism has originality
in style; this from M. Curtis:

            Few things are more snoozy than birds by Brancusi
            except for his other whatsies and whosies,

            the mish-mash of this and that stone and bright bronze
            and other rough stuff that he would pile upon
            the plates of the critics and the connoisseurs
            who ate with delight this stuff from the sewers
            and fed us the masses his smelly caprices
            then bid we enjoy the great masterpieces …

                                    -from “Brancusi”

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism is educational, a must-have in
public libraries,
school libraries,
university libraries,
The Library of Congress, where it is,
and your library, where it should be.

Modern Art is a critique in rhyme.

* * *

Modern Art: An Exhibition in Criticism

Illustration credit: William Girard

Author: Michael Curtis

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