Announcing the "Thomas Gradgrind Award"

This week's Gradgrind goes to Michael Kimmelman of the New York Times, for the last paragraph of his "Greater New York 2005" review:
It's good, in this context, to find a selection of Steve Mumford's painted dispatches from Iraq, plainspoken journalistic pictures of a throwback kind. They announce a mature artist looking closely at what is urgently unfolding around him. Their traditional sobriety stands out in a show that, like the burbling young art world now, seems gladly co-opted and almost too able to please.
Top hole, Mr. Kimmelman. Top hole. Our lady Queen Victoria would be most impressed, Indeed, one wishes to see young artists be mature and perspicacious in their craft and not susceptible to influences of the fleeting and trivial sort. And all the better if the illustration in question is in the illustrious service of the Empire, what ho? (Tip of the top hat to bill for finding this most stout and exemplary paragraph.)

- tom moody 3-20-2005 12:52 am

"There's a strong neocon, anti-New York strain in the blog commentariat that I suspect finds both shows trivial"

Well, I don't know. Of course, we may read different blogs, but...there are definitely some sites that have an "anti-New York" attitude, but most of those outside of NY probably aren't commenting because (like me) they haven't seen it. There's only so far one can go by blogging on press reports. As for those in New York, timing may be a factor as well - having the Armory Show and the Greater New York opening about the same time has probably left a lot of people drained. I saw a lot more coverage of the former over the past week, and expect to see more on the latter in the near future.
- MS (guest) 3-20-2005 1:19 am

I took out that paragraph--the "both shows" you're referring to being Greater New York 2000 and 2005. I do see a lot of lame New York bashing on blogs but that's not a topic I mean to draw out here. I said what I had to say a few posts back about curators being lazy with these "time and place" shows and I should probably leave it that. Thanks for your comment and sorry to yank away the impetus for it.

- tom moody 3-20-2005 3:26 am

"the "both shows" you're referring to being Greater New York 2000 and 2005."

Ah, I see. Sorry - I didn't quite grasp that when writing my earlier comment. As for your comments regarding the whole "time and place" bit, I agree entirely, and you're probably right - enough said.
- MS (guest) 3-21-2005 4:57 am