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The Battle of the “Bergs” – The Struggle for the Meaning of Abstract Expressionism

August 8th, 2011

Greenberg and Rosenberg

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Guest Speaker: Norman L. Kleeblatt
Recorded: Wednesday, June 29, 7-8:30 pm @ Jackman Hall, Art Gallery of Ontario
Duration: 01:31:53

No two critics have been more closely associated with the Abstract Expressionist movement in America than Greenberg and Rosenberg. Their pitched battles over formal purity versus existential meaning were played out in art magazines, galleries, and museums nationwide. Their rivalry was so intense that satirist Tom Wolfe dubbed them the “Bergs.” Norman Kleeblatt, chief curator of the Jewish Museum in New York, offers an opportunity to reconsider Abstract Expressionism’s evolution through the contradictory explanations of these two major critics and tastemakers.

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  • Waspencer

    I have inherited what looks to be an original oil painting by Briton Riviere. It was purchased from the Nash Gallery, London Ontario Canada in 1946 by my wife’s grandmother. Her documents indicate that the painting hung in the Royal Academy in London in 1889.  The painting is about 37″x35″ and portrays 7 mounted knights whose horses are in confusion when coming upon a jester on a donkey. It is signed 18B89 and on the back written “Mitchell Collection”. Also says – Briton Riviere RA, 82 Finchley Road, W.W., RA 1889. Could anyone tell us about the painting and would anyone be interested in it?
    Thank you, ws