Art: Negative Realist

Crazily crowded openings, with enthusiasts jammed straight up against the pictures they came to view, are a regular feature of the booming Manhattan art season. But few had seen the like of Robert Beverly Hale's opening at Manhattan's Staempfli Gallery last week. His show began selling out* before the first Scotch spilled, remained a pandemonium long after the caterer's bar had closed. It was his first one-man show in Manhattan; were it his last, he would have achieved a lasting fame. The artist, a stooped and apparently quizzical Yankee aristocrat, 59 luxurious...

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