Art: Nostalgia

Alan D. Gruskin, director of Manhattan's Midtown Galleries, was in a complaining mood: the abstractions that young painters are turning out these days are just "too academic—a formula too easy for the young painter to learn without ever having learned the fundamentals." Last week Gruskin put on a show that was about as fundamental as he could imagine. Its subject: the nude.

Gruskin's artists obviously appreciate the human figure, and they seem to prefer it uncaged by cubes and triangles, crisscrosses and cones. Their nudes crouched or sat or slept, looking just as they...

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