The Harvard Crimson has waded into the treacherous controversies swirling around the “Pollock Matters” exhibition currently on view at Boston College’s McMullen Museum (see previous posts here in “Anonymous Sources.”)
Crimson staff writer Anna K. Barnet opines, in part:
“Curated by Ellen Landau in collaboration with Claude Cernuschi, “Pollock Matters” is the first exhibition to display the [disputed] paintings discovered in 2002 by Alex Matter, son of Herbert and Mercedes, and attributed to Pollock.
“The show leaves the puzzle unfinished—the exhibition and its impressive, engaging companion catalogue don’t provide any easy answers. And with good reason: there aren’t any.
“Instead, the exhibition presents the evidence for both sides of the debate clearly and cogently….
“Designated “Jackson experimental” on the wrapper in which they were found, and not attributed to any artist on their museum labels, the paintings are uneven in quality and texture, but some of the disputed paintings manage to be little marvels in miniature, works that are engaging completely independent of their origin.
“Pollock Matters” is exactly what a show at a college museum should be. Its investigative nature and interdisciplinary approach beautifully fulfill the aims of a research institution, in this instance exploring contemporary questions in modern art to great effect.”
Barnet joins former Boston Globe critic Ken Johnson in hailing the McMullen show for its scholarship and for the outstanding quality of some of the disputed works. After years of heated scholarly disagreements and media speculation, could this be the first signs of a critical consensus?