Andrew Mangravite is an archivist at the Chemical Heritage Foundation. He has written on art and film and has translated several of the French Symbolist writers. A new edition of his poetry collection, A Book of Cinquains, is due shortly. He has also written two collections of stories and one other collection of poems. He lives in Philadelphia.
By this Author
'Under the Skin' and 'Only Lovers Left Alive'
New takes on horror
Genre films are not just for hacks — well-regarded indie directors Jonathan Glazer and Jim Jarmusch try their hands at horror.
Joe Sacco’s ‘The Great War’
The face of war, seen from the trenches
The Great War is actually a 24- foot drawing, divided into 24 narrative panels, each crammed with mind-boggling detail. For Americans it’s a devastating reminder of what this war meant to England and, by extension, Europe.
David Brewster at PAFA
The return of the native — sort of
Over the years David Brewster’s subject matter has changed, but his work has never lost a fierce sense of urgency. This is a man who loves putting paint to canvas.
‘Surrealists’ at the Art Museum (1st review)
It is and isn’t Art
Surrealists didn’t depict things so much as what things suggested to the painter. They were ready to embrace the irrational precise because they saw where an ordered, rational social structure had led them. This Art Museum show rounds up the usual suspects but also includes some intriguing painters you rarely if ever hear of.
Dante Ferretti’s film designs at MoMA
He turns cardboard into dreams
Production designers are the unsung heroes of film. The script and director may be brilliant, but at the end of the day, the audience must be able to accept that a plaster and cardboard set is the real thing.
Levinthal & Garvey vs. Goodman at Gross McCleaf
Emotion vs. control
Gross McCleaf’s current show offers an interesting and rewarding confrontation of styles, and also of outlooks concerning how art is created and what it’s meant to be.
Jonathan Franzen’s ‘The Kraus Project’
Why was Karl Kraus so angry? Well, you’d angry too if….uh….
Karl Kraus, the Austrian playwright, editor and social critic, was little known to today’s English-speaking audience— until now. Thanks to the novelist and Kraus scholar Jonathan Franzen, the angry old man of German satire lives anew.
German Romantic prints at the Art Museum
What Germans loved, before they loved Germany
This extraordinarily rich collection of German prints is an exhibit of popular art that was widely distributed via prints and books. Thus it truly represents the voice of the people, as opposed to the (possibly eccentric) vision of a single artist.
Rick Buttari at F.A.N. Gallery
A preference for the past
Rick Buttari seems an artist in two minds: On the one hand, a keen observer of people and something of a social critic; on the other, a recorder of the cityscape he lives in.
Last bow for Artists' House
Farewell to a haven for realist art
I was late in discovering Artists' House, showcase for emerging contemporary artists, but I always enjoyed my visits there immensely. Now that it's “retiring,” this show is your last chance— and it's a good one.
Was Hitler an Expressionist?
Hitler rehearsing a speech, 1925: What the camera tells us
Hitler denounced the German Expressionists as "degenerate artists." But a set of photos from 1925 suggests that he may have been the greatest Expressionist of them all.
"Night Vision' at Gross McCleaf Gallery
Fourteen shades of night
Night, as a theme, can conjure up feelings of loneliness and dread, or it can impel us to seek out warmth and light. Some of the 14 artists at Gross McCleaf interpret the subject more literally than others.