Art: Surprises from All Over

Art is a universal language—at least in theory. To prove it, UNESCO borrowed some 900 contemporary paintings from 30 countries, hung them, in Paris' marble Museum of Modern Art. UNESCO's delegates had already departed when the International Show finally closed its doors last week. It had been perhaps the most comprehensive exhibition of its kind ever assembled, big enough to turn up a number of surprises.

Paris museumgoers noted with complacent smiles that most of the exhibition's far-flung artists painted with a Paris accent. Parisians preferred the genuine article, in an upstairs room full of Picasso, Matisse, Bonnard and Rouault.

The U.S. contingent...

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