Art: As Paint Leaves Brush

What ever happened to all those scaffold-borne WPA muralists who did post offices and courthouses during the Depression days of the Federal Art Project? Some became bums, some are dead, some are doing toothpaste ads. Some, like Philip Evergood, became successful representational artists. And some, escaping from the chunky nude moms and arm-and-hammer mill workers, the wheat stacks and cogwheels of federal wall paintings, have turned into top-rank abstract expressionists. Next week Manhattan's Whitney Museum of American Art opens a show by one of them: 64 oils, gouaches and watercolors by James Brooks that make his old murals look, by comparison,...

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