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Collection of Contemporary Art
Tel Aviv Museum of Art | 27 Shaul HaMelech Blvd.,
The Golda Meir Cultural and Art Center
December 28, 2000 - March 24, 2001
Catalog +++ Contents +++ Imprint
Works in the exhibition +++ Essay

Schwarz catalog Tel Aviv Museum of Art  Goodman and Lurie at Tel Aviv Museum of Art
Schwarz catalog cover | Goodman's & Lurie's part

Catalogue | Editor: Ahuva Israel | Design and Production: Shlomit Dov | Translations: From Italian to English: Stephen V Piccolo, Milan + From French to English: Ruth Morris + From Hebrew to English: Richard Flantz | English Editing: Richard Flantz + David Margolis - The essays by Angela Vettese and Gio Ferri | Photographs: Avraham Hay | Hebrew word-processing: Hagit Stemfeld | Typesetting: El-Ot Ltd | Color Separations and Plates: H. S. Halfi Ltd. Tel Aviv | Printed in Israel by Ravgon Co. Ltd.

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390 Foreword Mordechai Omer
387 Introduction and Acknowledgments Ahuva Israel
382 An Autobiographical Account of the Birth of My Donations Arturo Schwarz
379 Publications by Arturo Schwarz
375 List of Works
360 Catalogue - The catalogue runs from right to left in the Hebrew order
49 Early Postwar Italian Avant-Garde Movements: Spatialism and Nuclearism Angela Vettese
79 Abstract Artists Angela Vettese
89 Cold Poetic Image Angela Vettese
131 Visual Poetry Gio Ferri
149 New Surrealists Angela Vettese
157 American Social Realism Ahuva Israel
194 The New Figuration Angela Vettese
189 A Tribute to Herbert Pagani Arturo Schwarz
227 The New Realism Pierre Restany
243 Fluxus Angela Vettese
264 Between Arte Povera and Trans-Avangarde in Italian Art Daniel Wajman
356 Contemporary Israeli Art Mordechai Omer

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Tel Aviv Museum of Art | Director and Chief Curator: Prof. Mordechai Omer | The Vera, Silvia and Arturo Schwarz Collection of Contemporary Art, December 28, 2000 - March 24, 2001 | Exhibition Curator: Ahuva Israel | Curator of Israeli Art: Prof. Mordechai Omer | Exhibition Design: David Gal | Conservation: Hasiah Rimon - Works on paper + Irit Lev - Objects + Maya Dresner, Ma'ayana Fliss - Oil paintings | Preparation for Framing: Amir Azoulai | Hanging: Tibi Hirsch | Lighting: Naor Agayan, Lior Gabai, Eyal Weinblum

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Goodman's and Lurie's works in the show

Goodman: 1961 Death
Sam Goodman: Death, 1961

Sam Goodman: GoldShit
Sam Goodman: Goldshit, 1960
[A Joint work with Boris Lurie]

Boris Lurie: Liberty or Lice
Boris Lurie: Liberty or Lice, 1959-60

Boris Lurie: Adieu Amerique
Boris Lurie: Adieu Amerique, 1960

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AHUVA ISRAEL: American Social Realism

Sam Goodman and Boris Lurie implemented in the United States a model that is characteristic of European art: the activities of an organized group of artists that proclaims its intentions and publishes manifestoes. They joined with Stanley Fisher and in 1960 formed the March Group, which was also known by the name No! Artists. The center for the group’s activities was the March Gallery in 10th Street in Manhattan, and as Lurie put it, the group's goal was to break away from the ivory tower of art, to be involved in life, and to speak the truth with direct visual means, even if these did not conform to aesthetic codes and good taste. Their exhibitions had provocative names such as "Doom Show", "Vulgar Show”, "Involvement”, and the participants included Wolf Vostell and Alan Kaprow.

Thomas B. Hess, in a critical article in the periodical Art News, called Boris Lurie and Sam Goodman "true social realists” - "true”, firstly because their profound involvement and ideological commitment as "artist-citizens” was total and included their artistic work, their life-style and the broad cultural context they were active in. Secondly, perhaps, in order to distinguish them from the chapter of American art that has the same name, which referred to the conservative realist art with a social message and an intra-American - national and regional - orientation that was produced during the thirties, the period of the economic depression in the United States.

Lurie's and Goodman's commitment to their ideology yielded works that dealt with social injustices, exploitation, poverty, war, as well as with subjects connected with the Holocaust, which were treated by Boris Lurie, a survivor of the Buchenwald concentration camp, and which were totally taboo in those years. The subjects of their painting were the waste materials of the society itself, and their images were forceful and direct, completely ignoring the polite discourse - without allusions, allegories or metaphors as a wall of defense - in a kind of dismissal of the boundaries between life and art. In comparison with their works, the murals with a social message by the Mexican artists Diego Rivera, Orozco and Siqueiros, which had a great influence on the American left in the thirties, look quite respectable and reputable.

The syntax of their works blended the brush gestures of American Abstract Expressionism with images, newspapers, ready-made photographs, objects and texts resembling underground slogans - a syntax which recalls works by Robert Rauschenberg and the Radical Dadaists. They exposed society's innards, and everything that had been swept under the carpet or considered not nice, distressing, or disturbing, was treated in their artistic oeuvre. Images conventionally associated with traditional genre subjects were totally absent from the group’s exhibitions: Lurie’s figures of women are distorted or amputated; for Sam Goodman a landscape is a chessboard with squashed and burned pawns on it; a still-life, for example, is three hand-grenades in an ancient ceramic bowl, or "Shit Sculptures” - a joint project by Lurie and Goodman from 1962 that included plaster sculptures painted in the color of the real thing (cat. 88 shows a gilded version). The group's activities were generally perceived as too radical for the United States, and it broke up with the emergence of the new art agenda - Pop Art.

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