PL: To me, it’s knowledgeable by the mathematical fashions, the place a bust of a girl has been woven right into a mathematical mannequin, in order that it blurs the boundary between figuration and abstraction. And from one other viewpoint, it seems like a torso. Are you able to see what I’m saying?
VS: Positive, it’s that line between figuration and abstraction, abstraction and figuration—that’s all the time been of curiosity to me, and to artists like Albert Oehlen, Sigmar Polke, or Cecily Brown. This portray encapsulates that type of considering.
PL: And, despite the fact that it seems completely summary, the 1954 Man Ray portray Composition, has the title that means it’s summary, but it surely has the look of a geometrical portrait with the face of a proud determine, as seen from beneath with its head considerably within the clouds, like a determine carrying himself with dignity. The place did you discover this portray?
VS: Timothy Baum discovered it in France. I acquired an electronic mail with a picture stating, “an surprising customer.” It’s good to have his three portray work from the Nineteen Forties, when Man Ray was in Los Angeles, with two from the Nineteen Fifties, after he had returned to Paris.
PL: Again to Picabia, his portray Helias, from the Thirties, is so playful, with the female and male faces, and a girl’s fingers layered over an historical lyre. I learn it as a relationship between a pair, the place the girl is liable for making the music. What’s your tackle it?
VS: That’s attention-grabbing. I’ve all the time seen the overlaid determine’s face in profile as an Egyptian girl with a Picassoesque nostril. She’s taking part in the harp, wooing him. He seems fairly heavy-eyed. I like your rationalization of it. It’s like what are you doing to me proper now? She has a extra assertive look—she’s in management. The portray has a beautiful ambiance. It’s an idyllic portray.
PL: Picabia was born wealthy. Do you assume having cash gave him inventive freedom—freedom to make the kind of work that he wished to make, whether or not it bought or not?
VS: It undoubtedly gave him inventive freedom, but I don’t assume it damage the respect he had from his fellow artists. From all the things I’ve learn, he appeared fairly snug in his personal pores and skin—fairly positive of his follow and his capabilities
PL: Do you assume Man Ray has the place in historical past that he deserves?
VS: No, I feel he’s underrated within the total scope of issues. He’s nicely represented in MoMA’s assortment and the Whitney has fairly a number of works, however he was born in New York and deserves a retrospective on the Whitney Museum, together with his pictures, portray, and sculptures. It might even be Man Ray and mates, however I feel he’s undoubtedly deserving of it and I stay up for seeing it.