Amazingly, it is already the Labor Day weekend and summer is coming to a close. Seems like just yesterday we were anticipating the opening of the Dada Show at the Museum of Modern Art and now it's in its last few days!
In honor of Summer 2006 I'd like to pay tribute to some of the really great exhibitions and events that I had the good fortune to be able to visit and are now, like the season, either over or very nearly so.
The major art event had to be the reuniting of 5 stolen paintings by Gustav Klimt to their rightful owner and the subsequent sale of the magnificent portrait "Adèle Bloch Bauer I" to Mr. Ronald Lauder and the Neue Galerie for the staggering sum of $135 million. Many art lovers stood in line to see exactly what that huge amount of money would buy, and few were disappointed. The latest chapter in the saga is that the sale of the 4 remaining paintings will be handled by Christies either by private treaties or public auction, thereby making this the last opportunity to see these gorgeous works together in one room.
For performance art, the Batsheva Dance Company's visually stunning "Telophaza" was outstanding. New York audiences who experienced the spectacle of "Anaphaza" in 2003 were eagerly awaiting the return of this Israeli troupe to the stage of the State Theatre at Lincoln Center. The creativity, athleticism and wit of the choreography and dancers captivated the audience once again. We can hardly wait till the next time.
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art presented a wonderful exhibition of Portraits by David Hockney. Covering his entire career from the early drawings of his family in England to large scale paintings whose paint was barely dry, this retrospective was as engaging as it was complete. A portrait by David Hockney is a snapshot into a personality and it is no wonder that people beg to sit for him. Although British by birth, Hockney has lived in Los Angeles since 1978 and is now the total embodiment of a California painter.
Other highlights of the season would have to include Dorothy Draper at the Museum of the City of New York, "Little Miss Sunshine" direct from the Sundance Festival to a big screen near you, and the revival of "Jacques Brell is Alive and Well and Living in Paris" at the Zipper Theatre Off-Broadway. Finally, the retirement of Andre Agassi from the world of professional tennis marks the end of an era. Any player who can sustain a career for 21 thrilling years is a superstar, and Andre Agassi was indeed that, both on and off the court.