Vasily Kandinsky: Around the Circle

Abstractionism—think Kandinsky—denied representation altogether, but assumed all the conventions of pictorial space, hence the nonrepresentational use of color, line, form, and so on. J.M. Bernstein, “Freedom From Nature” in Hegel and the Arts, ed. Stephen Houlgate (Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 2007), 220. Approaching it in one way I see no essential difference between a line […]

Twenty-first Century Museum Interprets Ancient Middle Eastern Art.

Visitors to the Cincinnati Art Museum may have noticed that the first gallery on the right past the entrance – the Middle East Gallery – has been closed about a year. In a marvelous four-year research project, the museum made significant physical and curatorial changes to the museum’s existing 2,800-square-foot ancient Middle East that reopened […]

Concord and Discord: Examining Ancient Stories

“Concord and Discord: Examining Ancient Stories” is a two person show of the work of area artists, Mary Anne Donovan and Cynthia Kukla. In many ways, though, it is a single show as well. Themes, palettes, strategies, motifs and formal approaches bounce back and forth between the work of both artists. Each artist invites the […]

Drawing Every Day

In 1970, I started my first year in the MFA program at the University of Cincinnati. The MFA studios were at that time in old houses behind St George Church on Scioto and Classen Streets. While moving into my studio, I noticed a man in gray coveralls working on his 1950 Chevy pickup. I first […]

ArtsWave: the Engine for Arts in Greater Cincinnati

You don’t have to go to New York or Chicago to see first-rate productions. They are right here. ArtsWave plays a crucial role in support of arts in Greater Cincinnati helping it succeed as a region. It is the first and largest united arts fund in the county. The arts bring us joy, an escape […]

“Tiki Man” by Thom Atkinson

The night I met Thom Atkinson, he read a story aloud at a writers conference.  The first page of his work had me laughing so hard I cried, inelegantly, yes, even snottily. Seven pages later, the story moved with inevitable conviction to a point so terrible, so humanly tragic it became too wrenching for tears. […]