My Highlights from Frieze Masters 2014
Actually the workshop of Donato di Bardi, otherwise known as Donatello, otherwise known as the father of Renaissance sculpture, but no less “authentic” a work than a Rodin marble or a Picasso bronze. The surface of this polychromatic stuccoed relief is so subtle, but so rich, and then there’s the Virgin’s left hand cupping the child… somehow bearing the weight of the world, but out of this world.
A Cézanne study of the Géricault drawing from the Louvre. Easy to make a horse’s ass out of drawing a horse’s ass but Cézanne doesn’t. Instead he triumphs in a beautiful, understated, but insistent way.
De Kooning, Study for a woman, 1952, at PACE
This tracing / drawing for de Kooning’s great Woman I still bears witness (and paint traces) from the original canvas yet feels like a major work of art in its own right.
David Smith, Forging VI / IX / XI / V, at Robert Mnuchin Gallery
Four mid-fifties David Smith sculptures – stripped back, distilled, barely there and yet so strong.
Helly Nahmad Gallery’s booth
The only stand to be accompanied by an essay by Sir Norman Rosenthal. Picasso, Morandi, Dubuffet, Miró et al. displayed as if in a connoisseur’s apartment – which is strangely like Sir Norman’s old office at the Royal Academy.