Art: The American Taste

London's war-scarred Tate Gallery brimmed last week with the sweet & sour cream of U.S. art: 240 paintings by everyone from the razor-sharp 18th Century Portraitist John Singleton Copley to his blunt-edged fellow Bostonian, bitter, 31-year-old ex-G.I. Jack Levine.

The man who had the uneasy task of assembling the show was slender, studious Curator John Walker of Washington's National Gallery. Walker and his helpers among top-drawer U.S. museum directors had no trouble picking 19th Century masters like Winslow Homer and Thomas Eakins, but debated back & forth over such contemporary choices as Morris Grave's scratchy watercolor called Little Known Bird of the...

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