Price Is Right

A dazzling show sends an artist into the canon

Ken Price, courtesy LACMA; Photograph by Fredrik Nilsen

'Pastel,' 1995, a sculpture by Ken Price.

Every so often the world wakes up and decides that an artist who's been around for a while, and is even widely admired, is actually something more--like indispensable. This happened 25 years ago with the British painter Lucian Freud, thanks to a retrospective at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington that made everyone aware of how much was at stake in his every loaded brushstroke. It's happening again right now with the Los Angeles artist Ken Price. The new retrospective of his witty and mysterious ceramic sculpture at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is an event that settles him...

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