Art: Judgment Day for Judges

Like a platoon of daring turtles, U.S. art critics stuck their necks way out last week. The extrusion occurred in Cincinnati, where Art Museum Director Walter Siple had the bright idea of showing the "Critics' Choice" in contemporary U.S. art. Result: from 57 of the nation's professional art tasters, 57 varieties of painting.

Running the gamut of styles, the show leaned to the progressive, contained few echoes of war, political plumping, or the soap-box exhortations fashionable a decade ago. There were elaborate, anything-but-immaculate conceptions which for untutored eyes might just as well...

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