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Friday, July 08, 2005

Summer Doldrums

The lazy, quiet July and August artworld summer days are here (the horrific events in London yesterday, notwithstanding). Blog readership is down, posting fodder is scarce (but, thank goodness, there will always be the Wall Street Journal), and there’s not even that much of interest showing around the city to write about.

Last week I spent an afternoon walking through Chelsea. After seeing group show upon group show my mind began to wander. I began wishing I was at the beach instead.

Holland Cotter doesn’t feel the same way. In today’s Times he has a long piece highlighting this summer’s selections. The piece is so long, in fact, that my mind started to wander while reading it. Maybe it is time for a trip to the beach.

But if I were to head to the shore, I wouldn’t know what book to bring along because this week I have all but polished off every art blogger’s requisite summer read--the new de Kooning biography. Following the narrative of the painter’s life has left me feeling depressed: all the years of poverty, the vagaries of his critical reception, the inability to form and sustain interpersonal relationships, the chronic inability to make decisive decisions, the battle with alcoholism and the continual binges, the slide into dementia. The list could go on. It’s almost enough to make a bourgeois suburban life sound idyllic.

Ouch. I think I do need a vacation. A few days in Chicago, perhaps? Flavin at the MCA, a Cubs game, a day at the beach on Lake Michigan. I ought to look into booking tickets.

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